Litany of HAC Excuses Rejected in $39K Forfeiture Order

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The FCC’s Enforcement Bureau is standing firm on a $39,000 Forfeiture Order against wireless carrier Indigo Wireless, Inc. (Indigo) for past hearing aid compatibility (HAC) rule violations.  Despite numerous protestations by Indigo arguing for the cancellation or reduction of the forfeiture, the FCC expressly denied Indigo’s multiple arguments and reaffirmed the $39,000 amount.  Among these rejected arguments, the FCC found that (1) Indigo may not rely on a “reasonable belief” that a particular handset is HAC rated based on alternative Internet sources because determining the handset’s actual rating using the FCC’s official resources is “difficult to impossible”; (2) Indigo’s argument that its noncompliance was not willful is not sufficient to overcome Indigo’s repeated HAC violations; (3) a HAC violation forfeiture may not be determined to be excessive based on the argument that HAC violations are “minor”; and (4) Indigo’s claim of having a history of overall compliance may not serve as the basis for forfeiture cancellation or reduction in light of the nine-month duration of Indigo’s various violations.

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