Ignore at your own risk

The CRTC is threatening disconnection of a service provider for failure to comply with registration requirements.

In a Public Notice, the CRTC is hauling Brama Telecom, a Richmond Hill, Ontario based service provider, to a public hearing to be held in Gatineau on March 22, 2012 for having failed to comply with the requirements to register with the Consumer Complaints Commissioner. It was just over a year ago that the CRTC expanded the scope of the mandate for the CCTS, requiring registration for virtually all telecom service providers, regardless of their size and including internet services.

The CRTC’s is using the tools available to it for enforcement of the requirement. Brama will have to show cause:

  • why the Commission should not order disconnection of Brama’s telecommunications services for failure to comply with the requirement to become a member of the CCTS, as set out in Telecom Decision 2010-921 and Telecom Regulatory Policy 2011-46; and
  • why the Commission should not issue a mandatory order pursuant to section 51 of the Act with respect to Brama’s failure to submit information to the Commission as required by subsection 37(2) of the Act.

Section 51 of the Act says:

51. The Commission may order a person, at or within any time and subject to any conditions that it determines, to do anything the person is required to do under this Act or any special Act, and may forbid a person to do anything that the person is prohibited from doing under this Act or any special Act.

Subsection 37(2) says:

37. …

(2) Where the Commission believes that a person other than a Canadian carrier is in possession of information that the Commission considers necessary for the administration of this Act or any special Act, the Commission may require that person to submit the information to the Commission in periodic reports or in such other form and manner as the Commission specifies, unless the information is a confidence of the executive council of a province.

What makes a service provider operate with such defiance of the rules? The Public Notice indicates that Commission and CCTS staff held discussions with representatives of the service provider in August, and in a subsequent letter, the Commission ordered Brama to produce by August 24:

  • proof that it had become a member of the CCTS or arguments demonstrating that Brama does not provide services within the scope of the CCTS’s mandate; and
  • identification of the service providers from which Brama obtained service from as well as a list of the services provided to it.

It has not complied.

So now, it has been ordered to Ottawa on March 22, 2012. In addition, all service providers in Canada have effectively been told to check their records to see if they are providing any services to Brama and if so, describe the services to the CRTC by February 2.

Will Brama show up in March or risk finding itself in Court?

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