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New 911 Laws & Their Impact to Your Business

By Laura Armbruster on October 15, 2016 in Customer Service, Phone Systems
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Recently, the State of Texas implemented a new 911 law, called Kari’s Law, which is a mandatory regulation that requires your business to allow 911 to be called without dialing a prefix number (for more information check out our infographic).

Kari’s Law is one of several regulatory changes that have been introduced and are sweeping the nation. This caught the eye of people in Washington, and now there is another E911 law on the horizon – the Response Act of 2016.

“Our research uncovered this proposed law, which was introduced on May 13, 2016. It would require the FCC to adopt rules within 18 months to ensure that call location information is conveyed with MLTS 911 calls, said Jamie Tetts, president of SJS Communications. “Today, there are many multi-line telephone systems that do not push location information to a 911 operator, making it difficult for them to support rapid response times.”

Presently, 24 states have E-911 legislation enacted or pending that requires organizations over a certain size or purchasing a new PBX to implement E911 for the safety of their employees, students and visitors. Texas is one of those states and the expectation is that all MLTS be in compliance now, or within a year if an extension was filed.

THE IMPACT TO YOUR BUSINESS

Both Kari’s Law and the Response Act of 2016 are designed to improve safety in your business. The challenge for a business is if you are not in compliance today, how do you get there without incurring high costs?

“Many telephone systems simply require an adjustment in order to be in compliance with Kari’s Law,” said Jamie Tetts. “These are relatively simple service calls that your telecommunications service provider can often perform remotely.”

However, there are those systems that simply cannot be made compliant, either due to age or complex configuration making it impossible to adjust to meet the law.

Today, there are no monetary penalties for not complying with Kari’s Law. It remains to be seen if the Response Act of 2016 will carry financial penalties. However, the threat to your business is real.

“No one wants to have their employees and guests in an unsafe environment,” said Jamie. “Compliance is required and even without penalties, the consequences of not complying are dire, including potential lawsuits and bad publicity.”

The reality is you may have to consider a new telephone system. Therefore, it is imperative that you ensure E911 compliance is part of that system so that you are in compliance.

If your telephone system is not in compliance with Kari’s Law today, it is important to get that rectified quickly so you can ensure the safety and wellbeing of your employees and the future of your business.

Feel free to contact the SJS Communications team to find out if you need any updates to your existing business phone system to comply with Kari’s Law, or if you are considering an upgrade to ensure that you are in compliance with both this law and any upcoming E911 legislation. Call us at 817-855-2018 or contact us online so you can be certain your set up for E911 compliance.

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