Code of the District of Columbia

§ 47–3901. Definitions.

For the purposes of this chapter, the term:

(1) “Customer” means the person or entity that contracts with the home service provider for District-based wireless telecommunication service; provided, that for the purposes of determining the place of primary use, if the end user of the District-based wireless telecommunication service is not the contracting party, the term “customer” shall include the end user of the District-based wireless telecommunication service. The term “customer” shall not include a reseller of District-based wireless telecommunication service or a serving carrier under an arrangement to serve the customer outside the home service provider’s licensed service area.

(2) “District” means the District of Columbia.

(3) “District-based wireless telecommunication service” means mobile telecommunications service provided to a customer whose place of primary use is in the District.

(4) “Enhanced zip code” shall have the same meaning as set forth in 4 U.S.C. 124(4).

(5) “Gross charge” means all charges and fees paid for the act or privilege of originating or receiving in the District toll telecommunication service or District-based wireless telecommunication service, valued in money whether paid in money or otherwise, including cash, credits, services, and property of every kind or nature, and determined without any deduction on account of the cost of the telecommunication service, the cost of materials used, labor or service costs, or any other expenses.

(6) “Home service provider” means the facilities-based carrier or reseller with which the customer contracts for the provision of mobile telecommunications service.

(7) “Licensed service area” means the geographic area in which the home service provider is authorized by law or contract to provide mobile telecommunications service to the customer.

(8) “Mobile telecommunications service” means commercial mobile radio service, as defined in section 47 C.F.R. § 20.3, as in effect on June 1, 1999. The term “mobile telecommunications service” shall not include equipment sales, rental, maintenance, repair, or charges associated with wireless telecommunication equipment.

(9) “Person” means an individual, firm, partnership, society, club, association, joint-stock company, domestic or foreign corporation, estate, receiver, trustee, assignee, referee, or a fiduciary or other representative, whether or not appointed by a court, or any combination of individuals acting as a unit.

(10) “Place of primary use” means the street address representative of where the customer’s use of the mobile telecommunications service primarily occurs, which place shall be the residential street address or the primary business street address of the customer and shall be within the licensed service area of the home service provider.

(11) “Radio communication” or “communication by radio” means the transmission by radio of writing, signs, signals, pictures, and sound of all kinds.

(12) “Reseller” means a provider who purchases telecommunications services from another telecommunications service provider and then resells, uses as a component part of, or integrates the purchased services into a mobile telecommunication service. The term “reseller” shall not include a serving carrier with which the home service provider arranges for the purchased services to its customers outside the home service provider’s licensed service area.

(13) “Serving carrier” means a facilities-based carrier providing mobile telecommunications service to a customer outside a home service provider’s or reseller’s licensed service area.

(14) “Toll telecommunication company” includes each person or lessee of a person who provides for the transmission or reception within the District of any form of toll telecommunication service for a consideration.

(15) “Toll telecommunication service” means the transmission or reception of any sound, vision, or speech communication for which there is a toll charge that varies in amount with the distance or elapsed transmission time of each individual communication or the transmission or reception of any sound, vision, or speech communication that entitles a person, upon the payment of a periodic charge that is determined as a flat amount or upon the basis of a total elapsed transmission time, to an unlimited number of communications to or from all or a substantial portion of persons who have telephone or radiotelephone stations in a specified area outside the local telephone system area in which the station that provides the service is located.

(16) “Wireless telecommunication company” means any person providing mobile telecommunications services, including a person or lessee of a person who provides for, or resells, the transmission or reception of any form of mobile telecommunications services for a fee directly to the public or such classes of eligible users as to be effectively available to the public.

(17) “Wireless telecommunication equipment” means personal tangible property used by a customer to transmit or receive District-based wireless telecommunication services.


(Sept. 20, 1989, D.C. Law 8-26, § 2, 36 DCR 4723; enacted, Apr. 9, 1997, D.C. Law 11-254, § 2, 44 DCR 1575; Apr. 30, 1998, D.C. Law 12-100, § 2(e), 45 DCR 1533; Oct. 19, 2000, D.C. Law 13-172, § 2302(b), 47 DCR 6308; June 9, 2001, D.C. Law 13-305, § 302(f), 48 DCR 334; June 19, 2001, D.C. Law 13-313, § 16(d), 48 DCR 1873; Mar. 25, 2003, D.C. Law 14-215, § 2(b), 49 DCR 9444.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 47-3901.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 47-1508, § 47-2001, and § 47-2005.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 13-172 in subsec. (2)(B) inserted “; or, beginning on April 30, 1998, 2-way land mobile radio used for taxicabs fare dispatch and for communication between taxicab drivers and their base”.

D.C. Law 13-305 rewrote par. (10) and added par. (14).

Prior to amendment, par. (10) read:

“(10) ‘Toll telecommunication company’ means, but is not limited to, each person or lessee of a person who provides for the transmission or reception, within the District, of any form of toll telecommunication service for a consideration.”

D.C. Law 13-313, in par. (2)(B), deleted “; or, beginning on April 30, 1998, 2-way land mobile radio used for taxicab fare dispatch and for communication between taxicab drivers and their base” following “personal communications service”; and rewrote par. (2)(C) which had read:

(2)“(C) ‘Commercial mobile service’ does not include equipment sales, rental, maintenance, repair, or charges associated with wireless telecommunication equipment.”

D.C. Law 14-215 rewrote the section.

Cross References

Gross sales tax, exemptions, sales of personal property purchased by toll telecommunication and wireless telecommunication companies, see § 47-2005.

Taxation of personal property, exemptions, toll telecommunication and wireless telecommunication companies, see § 47-1508.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 2(b) of Mobile Telecommunications Sourcing Conformity Emergency Act of 2002 (D.C. Act 14-442, July 23, 2002, 49 DCR 7835).

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 2(b) of Mobile Telecommunications Sourcing Conformity Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2002 (D.C. Act 14-509, October 23, 2002, 49 DCR 10240).

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 2(b) of Mobile Telecommunications Sourcing Conformity Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 2003 (D.C. Act 15-5, January 22, 2003, 50 DCR 1446).

Editor's Notes

Definitions applicable: The definitions in § 1-202 apply to terms appearing in the 1973 amendment to this section.

Applicability of Law 14-215: Section 3 of D.C. Law 14-215 provided: “This act shall apply to charges for mobile telecommunications services reflected on customer bills issued after August 1, 2002.”

Delegation of Authority

Delegation of authority pursuant to D.C. Law 7-204, the “Frigid Temperature Protection Amendment Act of 1988”, see Mayor’s Order 89-123, June 2, 1989.

Delegation of authority under D.C. Law 8-26, the “Toll Telecommunication Service Tax Act of 1989.”, see Mayor’s Order 91-175, October 24, 1991.

Delegation of authority pursuant to D.C. Law 9-157, the “Tissue Transplantation Distribution Amendment Act of 1992”, see Mayor’s Order 93-61, May 12, 1993.