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Posted Jul 6, 2013
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Surcharges and other fees, Government fees and Taxes

I am researching my own AT&T wireless bill to better understand ALL the additional fees and charges that, in total, add more than 15% to my monthly bill.

 

I have looked at the AT&T webpage explanation, but find it very basic and not helpful in understanding how "exactly" the taxes and fees are calculated.

 

I'm in Austin, Texas so here is the itemized list from my bill.

 

"Surcharges and other fees":

Administrative fee - $0.61 fixed per line

Federal universal service charge - varies per line

Regulatory cost recovery charge - $0.45 fixed per line

State cost-recovery fee - varies per line

Texas universal serivce - varies per line

 

"Government fees and taxes":

9-1-1 service fee - $0.50 fixed per line

911 equalization surcharge - $0.06 fixed per line

County district sales tax - varies per line

County district sales tax - telecom - varies per line

TX state sales tax - varies per line

TX state sales tax - telecom - varies per line

 

Is there a way to duplicate the math AT&T uses to determine these charges for my bill?

 

Is there a more detailed document that explains each of these in detail? 

 

I have tried to back into the numbers based upon the stated Texas tax rates but that doesn't seem to tie out to my bill. I know it's complicated, but seems like a consumer should be able to understand the additional fees.

 

For example, according to the State of Texas comptroller's office there is no county telecom tax for Travis County, yet AT&T is charging me for a tax.

 

CUTexas

I am researching my own AT&T wireless bill to better understand ALL the additional fees and charges that, in total, add more than 15% to my monthly bill.

 

I have looked at the AT&T webpage explanation, but find it very basic and not helpful in understanding how "exactly" the taxes and fees are calculated.

 

I'm in Austin, Texas so here is the itemized list from my bill.

 

"Surcharges and other fees":

Administrative fee - $0.61 fixed per line

Federal universal service charge - varies per line

Regulatory cost recovery charge - $0.45 fixed per line

State cost-recovery fee - varies per line

Texas universal serivce - varies per line

 

"Government fees and taxes":

9-1-1 service fee - $0.50 fixed per line

911 equalization surcharge - $0.06 fixed per line

County district sales tax - varies per line

County district sales tax - telecom - varies per line

TX state sales tax - varies per line

TX state sales tax - telecom - varies per line

 

Is there a way to duplicate the math AT&T uses to determine these charges for my bill?

 

Is there a more detailed document that explains each of these in detail? 

 

I have tried to back into the numbers based upon the stated Texas tax rates but that doesn't seem to tie out to my bill. I know it's complicated, but seems like a consumer should be able to understand the additional fees.

 

For example, according to the State of Texas comptroller's office there is no county telecom tax for Travis County, yet AT&T is charging me for a tax.

 

CUTexas

Surcharges and other fees, Government fees and Taxes

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Jul 6, 2013 8:40:00 AM
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CUTexas wrote:

I am researching my own AT&T wireless bill to better understand ALL the additional fees and charges that, in total, add more than 15% to my monthly bill.

 

I have looked at the AT&T webpage explanation, but find it very basic and not helpful in understanding how "exactly" the taxes and fees are calculated.

 

I'm in Austin, Texas so here is the itemized list from my bill.

 

"Surcharges and other fees":

Administrative fee - $0.61 fixed per line

Federal universal service charge - varies per line

Regulatory cost recovery charge - $0.45 fixed per line

State cost-recovery fee - varies per line

Texas universal serivce - varies per line

 

"Government fees and taxes":

9-1-1 service fee - $0.50 fixed per line

911 equalization surcharge - $0.06 fixed per line

County district sales tax - varies per line

County district sales tax - telecom - varies per line

TX state sales tax - varies per line

TX state sales tax - telecom - varies per line

 

Is there a way to duplicate the math AT&T uses to determine these charges for my bill?

 

Is there a more detailed document that explains each of these in detail? 

 

I have tried to back into the numbers based upon the stated Texas tax rates but that doesn't seem to tie out to my bill. I know it's complicated, but seems like a consumer should be able to understand the additional fees.

 

For example, according to the State of Texas comptroller's office there is no county telecom tax for Travis County, yet AT&T is charging me for a tax.

 

CUTexas


you can go here and plug in the zip for more information

 

http://www.wireless.att.com/cell-phone-service/additionalcharges/

 

but as far as how they are calculated and what they are based on, the information comes from the state / city / county tax laws.


CUTexas wrote:

I am researching my own AT&T wireless bill to better understand ALL the additional fees and charges that, in total, add more than 15% to my monthly bill.

 

I have looked at the AT&T webpage explanation, but find it very basic and not helpful in understanding how "exactly" the taxes and fees are calculated.

 

I'm in Austin, Texas so here is the itemized list from my bill.

 

"Surcharges and other fees":

Administrative fee - $0.61 fixed per line

Federal universal service charge - varies per line

Regulatory cost recovery charge - $0.45 fixed per line

State cost-recovery fee - varies per line

Texas universal serivce - varies per line

 

"Government fees and taxes":

9-1-1 service fee - $0.50 fixed per line

911 equalization surcharge - $0.06 fixed per line

County district sales tax - varies per line

County district sales tax - telecom - varies per line

TX state sales tax - varies per line

TX state sales tax - telecom - varies per line

 

Is there a way to duplicate the math AT&T uses to determine these charges for my bill?

 

Is there a more detailed document that explains each of these in detail? 

 

I have tried to back into the numbers based upon the stated Texas tax rates but that doesn't seem to tie out to my bill. I know it's complicated, but seems like a consumer should be able to understand the additional fees.

 

For example, according to the State of Texas comptroller's office there is no county telecom tax for Travis County, yet AT&T is charging me for a tax.

 

CUTexas


you can go here and plug in the zip for more information

 

http://www.wireless.att.com/cell-phone-service/additionalcharges/

 

but as far as how they are calculated and what they are based on, the information comes from the state / city / county tax laws.

Re: Surcharges and other fees, Government fees and Taxes

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Jul 6, 2013 9:38:07 AM
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Thanks for the quick reply. I have read that site.

 

Unfortunately, it is very basic and the explanations and numbers given are not adequate enough to determine how the numbers on my invoice are derived. Even the items listed do not completely match the itemized charges on my invoice. For example, there is no explanation of the "State cost recovery fee" and no explanation of the taxes.

 

 

 

Additional Charges

The additional charges for new customers in your area are shown below, including explanations of each charge.

The amounts shown below are based on the highest fee/surcharge rates assessed in your state; your actual fees/surcharges may be less. In addition to the AT&T charges described below, you will be billed for mandatory taxes and fees imposed by federal, state, and local governments on wireless subscribers.

State TEXAS Federal Universal Service Fund 15.5% State Universal Service Fund 4.3% Regulatory Cost Recovery Charge 0.45 Administrative Fee $0.61 Other AT&T Surcharges 0.7% + $0.28

 

Surcharges and Other Fees

 

Federal Universal Service Charge

 

The Federal USF, created by the federal government, is designed to help ensure first-class, affordable telecommunications service for all consumers across the country, especially residents in high cost rural communities and low-income customers. Additionally, the Federal USF provides for discounted telecommunications services for schools, libraries and rural health-care facilities. All telecommunications providers are required to pay into the Federal USF, and their contributions may be recovered from customers.

State Universal Service Charge

 

Certain states have established state Universal Service Funds. The purpose of these state universal service funds is to ensure affordable telecommunications service for all consumers in the state, especially residents in high-cost rural areas and low-income customers. In certain states, all telecommunications providers are required to pay into these funds, and their contributions may be recovered from customers.

  Regulatory Cost Recovery Charge

 

The Regulatory Cost Recovery Charge is a charge assessed by AT&T associated with payment of government imposed fees and to recover the costs of compliance with government imposed regulatory requirements. It may include costs incurred in prior years that are not yet fully recovered. It is not a tax or charge which the government requires AT&T to collect from its customers. This charge is subject to change from time to time as the cost of compliance changes.

Components of the Regulatory Cost Recovery Charge include, but are not limited to: Federal Regulatory Fee, Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS), Wireless Number Portability and Number Pooling, Enhanced 911 (E911), Wireless Tower Mandates Costs, State Area Code Relief Costs, Customer Proprietary Network Information (CPNI) Notification Costs, Network Outage Reporting Costs, State Commission Annual Reporting Costs (Applies only in IN, KY, LA, NM, OH, VA, WI, WV WY), Gross Receipts Surcharge (Missouri Only), and Puerto Rico Regulatory Fee (Puerto Rico Only).

  Administrative Fee (Consumer and Individual Responsibility User (IRU) lines only)

 

The Administrative Fee helps defray certain expenses AT&T incurs, including but not limited to: (a) charges AT&T or its agents pay to interconnect with other carriers to deliver calls from AT&T customers to their customers; and (b) charges associated with cell site rents and maintenance.

  Other AT&T Surcharges

 

A percentage based and/or flat fee that AT&T assesses on the customer that allows it to recover its costs with regard to specific government taxes or fees imposed on the Company's gross receipts, sales and/or property. Such fees include, but are not limited to the State Telecommunications Relay Services, gross receipts surcharges, 911 access line charges, DEAF surcharges, local wireless surcharges, state infrastructure and similar surcharges, a property tax surcharge variable up to $1.00 (Puerto Rico only) and other fees imposed for government purposes. For business customers, such fees also include, but are not limited to a Property Tax Allotment surcharge of between $.20 and $.45 (currently $.28) applied with respect to Corporate Responsibility Users per assigned number (excluding Puerto Rico and where otherwise prohibited). These Surcharges are remitted by the Company to the government or used to recover costs already remitted by Company to the government, but are not mandated charges to the customer.

Surcharges and Other Fees are subject to change from time to time, although the Property Tax Allotment surcharge will not change more than once per calendar year.

Thanks for the quick reply. I have read that site.

 

Unfortunately, it is very basic and the explanations and numbers given are not adequate enough to determine how the numbers on my invoice are derived. Even the items listed do not completely match the itemized charges on my invoice. For example, there is no explanation of the "State cost recovery fee" and no explanation of the taxes.

 

 

 

Additional Charges

The additional charges for new customers in your area are shown below, including explanations of each charge.

The amounts shown below are based on the highest fee/surcharge rates assessed in your state; your actual fees/surcharges may be less. In addition to the AT&T charges described below, you will be billed for mandatory taxes and fees imposed by federal, state, and local governments on wireless subscribers.

State TEXAS Federal Universal Service Fund 15.5% State Universal Service Fund 4.3% Regulatory Cost Recovery Charge 0.45 Administrative Fee $0.61 Other AT&T Surcharges 0.7% + $0.28

 

Surcharges and Other Fees

 

Federal Universal Service Charge

 

The Federal USF, created by the federal government, is designed to help ensure first-class, affordable telecommunications service for all consumers across the country, especially residents in high cost rural communities and low-income customers. Additionally, the Federal USF provides for discounted telecommunications services for schools, libraries and rural health-care facilities. All telecommunications providers are required to pay into the Federal USF, and their contributions may be recovered from customers.

State Universal Service Charge

 

Certain states have established state Universal Service Funds. The purpose of these state universal service funds is to ensure affordable telecommunications service for all consumers in the state, especially residents in high-cost rural areas and low-income customers. In certain states, all telecommunications providers are required to pay into these funds, and their contributions may be recovered from customers.

  Regulatory Cost Recovery Charge

 

The Regulatory Cost Recovery Charge is a charge assessed by AT&T associated with payment of government imposed fees and to recover the costs of compliance with government imposed regulatory requirements. It may include costs incurred in prior years that are not yet fully recovered. It is not a tax or charge which the government requires AT&T to collect from its customers. This charge is subject to change from time to time as the cost of compliance changes.

Components of the Regulatory Cost Recovery Charge include, but are not limited to: Federal Regulatory Fee, Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS), Wireless Number Portability and Number Pooling, Enhanced 911 (E911), Wireless Tower Mandates Costs, State Area Code Relief Costs, Customer Proprietary Network Information (CPNI) Notification Costs, Network Outage Reporting Costs, State Commission Annual Reporting Costs (Applies only in IN, KY, LA, NM, OH, VA, WI, WV WY), Gross Receipts Surcharge (Missouri Only), and Puerto Rico Regulatory Fee (Puerto Rico Only).

  Administrative Fee (Consumer and Individual Responsibility User (IRU) lines only)

 

The Administrative Fee helps defray certain expenses AT&T incurs, including but not limited to: (a) charges AT&T or its agents pay to interconnect with other carriers to deliver calls from AT&T customers to their customers; and (b) charges associated with cell site rents and maintenance.

  Other AT&T Surcharges

 

A percentage based and/or flat fee that AT&T assesses on the customer that allows it to recover its costs with regard to specific government taxes or fees imposed on the Company's gross receipts, sales and/or property. Such fees include, but are not limited to the State Telecommunications Relay Services, gross receipts surcharges, 911 access line charges, DEAF surcharges, local wireless surcharges, state infrastructure and similar surcharges, a property tax surcharge variable up to $1.00 (Puerto Rico only) and other fees imposed for government purposes. For business customers, such fees also include, but are not limited to a Property Tax Allotment surcharge of between $.20 and $.45 (currently $.28) applied with respect to Corporate Responsibility Users per assigned number (excluding Puerto Rico and where otherwise prohibited). These Surcharges are remitted by the Company to the government or used to recover costs already remitted by Company to the government, but are not mandated charges to the customer.

Surcharges and Other Fees are subject to change from time to time, although the Property Tax Allotment surcharge will not change more than once per calendar year.

Re: Surcharges and other fees, Government fees and Taxes

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