We want to make you aware of an upcoming change to 911 that’s become law and is intended to improve emergency calling.
The new law is referred to as Kari’s Law.
Driven largely by the efforts of Kari Dunn’s father following the murder of his daughter, Kari’s Law was signed into law on February 16, 2018, and goes into effect this month on February 16, 2020.
Here’s a link from the FCC with a brief video that describes the origin of Kari’s Law: https://youtu.be/PWUyfL8PXec
What are the Kari’s Law requirements? Kari’s Law applies to new multi-line telephone systems (“MLTS”) “manufactured, imported, offered for sale or lease, or installed” after the compliance date of February 16, 2020. Noncompliance with the law could lead to a fine of up to $10,000 and additional penalties of up to $500 per day of noncompliance.
Kari’s Law requires 2 things from you and your phone system:
- To allow 911 to be dialed without any pre or post digits. This means users need to be able to dial 911 as 3 digits, without the need to dial 9 first, or something on the back-end to place the call.
- Notification that 911 was dialed from your system must be sent to designated personnel in your office (e.g. to a front desk or security office).
And there are 2 parts to this second clause that involve your phone system and your company:
- Your phone system vendor needs to program the internal designated party who will be notified if someone dials 911 from any phone that’s connected to your phone system (onsite or remote). This assumes that your phone system is capable of accommodating this change. Older systems that have been discontinued by the manufacturer may not be capable of complying. (Refer to our list below).
- You as the company and owner of the phone system need to direct first responders to the emergency location. This means you need to maintain an accurate list and/or map depending on your company’s landscape – including address, building, floor, and/or room for each extension. This includes staff that work virtual, from home, and from satellite offices.
Here’s the official FCC description:
(1) Kari’s Law applies to multi-line telephone systems (MLTS), which are telephone systems often used by office buildings, campuses, and hotels. Kari’s Law requires MLTS that are manufactured, imported, offered for first sale or lease, first sold or leased, or installed after February 16, 2020 to enable users to dial 911 directly, without having to dial a prefix to reach an outside line, and to provide for notification (e.g., to a front desk or security office) when a 911 call is made.
(2) RAY BAUM’S Act requires the Commission to consider adopting rules to ensure that a “dispatchable location” is conveyed with 911 calls, regardless of the technological platform used, so that 911 call centers will receive the caller’s location automatically and can dispatch responders more quickly. “Dispatchable location” is “the street address of the calling party, and additional information such as room number, floor number, or similar information necessary to adequately identify the location of the calling party.”
You can find the full FCC Notice at https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/FCC-18-132A1.pdf
Kari’s Law applies to new multi-line telephone systems sold, leased, or installed after February 16, 2020. It is our understanding that this new law does not require you to purchase new hardware for existing phone systems. But we are taking every precaution to notify you about the new law and make the necessary system programming changes (provided your system is capable) to ensure your own safety and security.
With the passage of the two important pieces of legislation, the FCC is rapidly moving toward establishing uniform federal standards for precise “dispatchable location” as well as internal notification of on-site teams to assist in response. Noncompliance with the law could lead to a fine of up to $10,000 and additional penalties of up to $500 per day of noncompliance.
IDeACOM will contact you to discuss your options and plan for compliance.
Here’s a list of the systems we currently support along with their compliance status.
- Zultys Cloud Services (ZCS) is compliant with the latest version of MX software. However, changes to system programming need to be made, and the new ZAC desktop client needs to be utilized for designated personnel to be notified.
- Zultys MX-E and MX-SE servers are compliant with the latest version of MX software. However, changes to system programming need to be made, and the new ZAC desktop client needs to be utilized for designated personnel to be notified.
- Intermedia Unite Cloud PBX is compliant with the latest version of Unite software. However, changes to system programming need to be made, along with an update for designated personnel to be notified.
- Intermedia Hosted PBX is not currently compliant. We are awaiting further updates from Intermedia.
- Zultys MX250 server is not compliant.
- Vodavi XTS / STS is not compliant.
If you have questions in the meantime, please contact your IDeACOM representative.