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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 20. Public Utilities and Telecommunications
Agency 5. State Corporation Commission
Chapter 428. Rules Governing Local Exchange Telecommunications Carrier Retail Service Quality
1/22/2020

20VAC5-428-10. Applicability; Definitions.

A. This chapter is promulgated pursuant to §§ 56-35, 56-36, 56-234, 56-234.4, 56-246, 56-247, 56-249, and 56-479 of the Code of Virginia and shall apply to local exchange carriers (LECs) providing local exchange telecommunications services within the Commonwealth of Virginia, except when a signed contract with a business customer provides otherwise. This chapter prescribes the minimum acceptable level of service quality under normal operating conditions. The commission may, after investigation and at its discretion, suspend application of this chapter during force majeure events, which include natural disaster, severe storm, flood, work stoppage, civil unrest, major transportation disruptions, or any other catastrophic events beyond the control of a LEC.

B. The following words and terms when used in this chapter shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

"Automated answering system" means a system where customer calls are received and directed to a live agent or an automated transaction system.

"Automated transaction system" means a system where customer transactions can be completed without the assistance of a live agent, and include the option to reach a live agent before the completion of an automated transaction.

"Central office" means a LEC-operated switching system, including remote switches and associated transmission equipment.

"Commission" means the Virginia State Corporation Commission.

"Customer" means any person, firm, partnership, corporation, municipality, cooperative, organization, or governmental agency that is an end user or the authorized agent of an end user of local exchange telecommunications services under the jurisdiction of the commission.

"Customer call center" means any functional entity that accepts customer calls pertaining to service orders, billing inquiries, repair, and any other related requests.

"Emergency" means a sudden or unexpected occurrence involving a clear and imminent danger demanding immediate action to prevent or mitigate loss of, or damage to, life, health, property, or essential public services.

"Local exchange carrier (LEC)" means a certificated provider of local exchange telecommunications services, excluding LECs subject to Chapter 16 (§ 56-485 et seq.) of Title 56 of the Code of Virginia.

"Local exchange telecommunications services" means local exchange telephone service as defined by § 56-1 of the Code of Virginia.

"Minimum acceptable level of service quality under normal operating conditions" means the minimum level of service that shall be considered by the commission to be reasonably adequate as required by §§ 56-234 and 56-247 of the Code of Virginia.

"Network" means a system of central offices and associated outside plant.

"Network access line (NAL)" means a voice-grade customer dial tone line that provides access to the public telecommunications network.

"Out of service" means a network service condition causing an inability to complete an incoming or outgoing call or any other condition that causes a connected call to be incomprehensible.

"Outside plant" means the network facilities not included in the definition of central office including, but not limited to, copper cable, fiber optic cable, coaxial cable, terminals, pedestals, load coils, or any other equipment normally associated with interoffice, feeder, and distribution facilities up to and including the rate demarcation point.

"Rate demarcation point" means the point at which a LEC's network ends and a customer's wiring or facilities begin.

"Repeat report" means a customer reported trouble that is received by a LEC within 30 days of another trouble report on the same NAL.

"Rolling 30-day average" means a determination of average compliance with the metrics set out in 20VAC5-428-90 B 2 through B 8 during the 30 days that precede the date or dates specified by the commission pursuant to 20VAC5-428-110 B.

"Speed of answer interval (SAI)" means the period of time following the completion of direct dialing, or upon completion of a customer's final selection or response within an automated answering system, and lasting until the call is answered by a live agent or is abandoned by the customer or the LEC. In the case of automated transactions where a customer opts to speak to a live agent, the SAI is the period of time following the customer opting to speak to a live agent until the call is answered by a live agent or is abandoned by the customer or the LEC. A call is considered to have been answered when a live agent is ready to render assistance.

"Staff" means the commission's Division of Communications and associated personnel.

"Trouble" means an impairment of a LEC's network.

"Trouble report" means an initial oral or written notice, including voice mail and email, to any LEC employee or agent of a condition that affects or may affect network service.

Statutory Authority

§§ 12.1-13, 56-35, 56-36, 56-234, 56-234.4, 56-246, and 56-479 of the Code of Virginia of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Volume 26, Issue 03, eff. November 1, 2009.

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