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How to file FCC form 499-A and get your FCC registration number

What is FFC Form 499-A?

FCC form 499-A must be filed by interstate or international telecommunications providers in the US to register for the Universal Service Fund and report their revenue. You'll have the form 499-a immediately inside your registered agent account with our DC agent information pre-populated on it immediately after signing up for our DC registered agent service.

Who needs the FCC registration?

File to get your FCC registration number as soon as you start providing telecommunications services. After that you file the form by April 1st each year. The FCC collects contributions and fees from providers annually, based on revenue reported on FCC form 499-A. These contributions go to the Universal Service Fund and a few other federal funds. Telecommunications providers file FCC Form 499-A to register with the FCC, but this is not an FCC license. Once you have registered, you can apply for an FCC license. Some FCC licenses require you to pass a test. Other FCC licenses, such as those for television and radio stations, require demonstration that technical requirements are met. Requirements for specific licenses are available on the FCC website.

Who needs an FCC registration number?

The first time you file FCC form 499-A, you will mark it as "new" where the FCC registration number should be. The FCC will assign your FCC registration number after your first filing. After you register with the FCC, you can search for your FCC registration number in the FCC form 499 filer database (see link below). After your initial FCC registration, you will need to list your FCC registration number on form 499-A each year.

How do you register with the FCC?

We provide FCC form 499-A, Telecommunications Reporting Worksheet, in your online account when you sign up with Northwest for our DC registered agent service. We have pre-populated the "Agent for Service of Process" section. You may file the paper FCC form 499-A or you can register online (see link below). You must submit FCC form 499-A by April 1st to report the previous year's revenue. Send paper FCC registration forms to:

Form 499 Data Collection Agent
c/o USAC
2000 L Street NW, Ste. 200
Washington, DC 20036

Are there any exceptions to FCC registration?

There are very few exceptions to the FCC registration and contribution requirements. Even if you are exempted from contributing to the Universal Service Fund, you probably still need to submit FCC form 499-A to register and report your revenue.

  • Complete FCC form 499-A to calculate your contribution. If your annual contribution is less than $10,000 in any year, you will fall under the de minimis exemption. De minimis filers still need to file FCC form 499-A, but they do not need to contribute to the Universal Service Fund. Keep a copy FCC form 499-A, Appendix A for five calendar years to document the exemption.
  • Governments, schools, broadcasters, and libraries do not usually need to contribute to the Universal Service Fund. They do not need file FCC form 499-A, unless they contribute to some other fund.
  • If a system integrator gets less than 5% of their system integration revenues from reselling telecommunications, they do not have to file FCC form 499-A or contribute to the various funds.

How do you pay the contribution after you file FCC Form 499-A?

The FCC will calculate the amount of your fund contributions and send a bill to the contact person and address listed on FCC form 499-A.

What is a DC registered agent? Who needs an agent for service of process in DC?

Telecommunication providers have to list a DC agent for service of process on FCC form 499-A. This is someone in DC who can accept service of process and official notices for the company. You will need the name, address, phone number, fax number, and email for your agent in DC. You may list a "local agent" in addition to your DC agent. Common carrier and VoIP filers must have an agent for service of process in DC and may use the local agent space to designate an alternative or preferred agent. Filers other than common carriers and VoIP providers only need one agent for service of process (who can be inside DC or elsewhere). We have offices in all 50 states and DC. We can be your local registered agent and your DC agent for service of process! Once you have an account with us, you can always add whatever state you need. Hire us as your DC registered agent and agent for service of process. For just $125 a year, we can be your agent for the DCRA and the FCC. We provide all the DC agency forms and filing instructions you need in your online account.

FCC form 499 filer database:  

FCC form 499-a submission:  


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