New Requirements for Multi-Line Telephone Systems

Kari’s Law amends the Communications Act of 1934

Kari’s Law amends the Communications Act of 1934 to require most multi-line telephone systems (MLTS) to be pre-configured so users may call “911” without dialing any additional digit, code, prefix or post-fix, including any trunk-access code, such as the digit “9”.

UniVoIP’s cloud-based phone and unified communication solution is one of the few helping agencies and businesses meet the new requirements. Our system sends alerts to a designated central point of contact, either within the building housing the system or to an outside location, when someone uses the system to call 911 as it is already configured to provide such notification “without an improvement to the hardware or software of the system” at a very minimal cost.

Over the past 15 years, UniVoIP has gained substantial milestones and has been recognized, as one of the top solutions in the migration of premise-based PBX to secured cloud communications. In fact, we have been following all the progress made by the FCC to provide a strong VoIP solution focused on safety and security. As the FCC is empowered to create rules and regulations to enforce the Communications Act which Kari’s Law is now a part of, we ensure that our solution communicates a 911 caller’s call-based or location information to Public Safety Answering Points.

The new Kari Law is requiring service providers to deliver a notification to a central location or someone if a subscriber dials 911” Chris Vuillaume, VP at UniVoIP. “We realized that compliance with this new Federal 911 Law was not fully supported by many providers, but at UniVoIP we understand that lives can be saved when drastically reducing response time of emergency responders. In addition, our customers are safe from any willful and knowing noncompliance which may lead to a substantial fine.”

Emergency Call Alert (ECA) is included and provided to all our OfficeConnect Business customers for no additional cost and configured by UniVoIP’s provisioning team and supported via the Web management portal. Again, Emergency Call Alert provides a notification when a subscriber dials an emergency class of service, such as 911.

Here is how it works

When a subscriber dials an emergency class of service, the system sends an email with the following subject and body.

  1. This email can be sent to one or multiple email addresses or a distribution list.
  2. This email can also trigger text messages or a screen pop.

UniVoIP has been supporting Emergency Call Alerts since 2014 and is used by thousands of customers. Years of experience with this notification system combined with thousands of 911 calls made by our customers have confirmed and delivered three impactful benefits.

Main Benefits

Faster Response Time: UniVoIP’s notification system alerts one or several people (located or not in the office where the 911 call is made). This allows local people (facility management, office security, HR, receptionist) to direct Emergency services to the right location and give a first identification (ID) of the victim.

It is especially important when dealing with multi-floor buildings, campuses or large facilities as every minute counts in such situation.

Avoid False alarm

Over the years, a lot of employees have been misdialing and calling 911 by mistake to hang up the call without speaking first. UniVoIP’s notification system helps in finding out if the call is a real emergency or not. It allows the emergency responders to respond quicker to real emergencies only, instead of traveling to the caller’s location to find out it was a false alarm.

Avoid Penalty for Failing to comply

For example, California Penal Code § 148.5 makes it illegal to make a report of a crime (felony or misdemeanor), while knowing the report is false, to a police officer, district attorney or any employee designated to accept such reports (i.e. 911 operator). Making such a false report is a misdemeanor. The individual may also claim that he or she was just reporting an emergency, but this is itself a separate crime if the report was knowingly made of a situation that was not an emergency. The false report of an emergency is punishable under Penal Code § 148.3.

The penalties to violating Penal Code § 148.5 and Penal Code § 148.3 may vary from one state to another, but can include a fine of up to $1,000 (plus penalties and assessments that can add up to close to $4,500). In addition, a person found in violation of Penal Code § 148.5 may be sentenced up to six months in county jail, but someone found in violation of § 148.3 can face up to a year in county jail.

Want to learn more?

Give us a call at 855-UNIVOIP (864-8647) or contact us here.