Two important E-rate deadlines occur in the month of October. In each case, failure to meet the deadline can result in the loss or reduction of E-rate funding!
FY2010 Form 472 (BEAR): Applicants that received commitments for recurring services for Funding Year 2010 should be aware that the deadline to seek reimbursements is October 28, 2011.
If you have submitted a Form 472 (BEAR), or plan to submit a BEAR within the month, it is important to monitor the form(s) using the online BEAR tool on the Schools and Libraries website to ensure that the Forms have been certified by the service provider. Large service providers generally receive hundreds of BEAR forms during the last week of the deadline. With this influx of forms, the service provider may not be able to certify your form within the deadline. If this is the case, your BEAR will not be accepted for reimbursement.
If you are afraid that your forms will not be certified by Oct. 28th, you will need to file an invoice deadline extension request from USAC using the “Submit a Question” tool. This request must be made prior to the invoicing deadline. More information about invoice deadlines may be found on USAC’s website.
While USAC does allow invoice deadline extensions under certain circumstances, it should be noted that an extension is not guaranteed. Some circumstances that might receive an extension include, but are not limited to:
- Authorized service provider changes
- Authorized service substitutions
- USAC Error
- “Good Samaritan” BEARs
- No timely USAC Notice
- Documentation requirements that call for third-party certification
- Circumstances beyond the service provider’s control
FY2011 Form 486: Applicants that received a Funding Year 2011 Funding Commitment Decision Letter (FCDL) before July 1, 2011, may need to file a Form 486 in order to avoid losing funding. A Form 486 must be postmarked or received no later than 120 days after the service start date shown on the Form 486 or 120 days after the date of the FCDL, whichever is later. Therefore, if you received your FY2011 FCDL before July 1st and were receiving services on July 1, the deadline to file the Form 486 is October 29, 2011.
You must remember to submit your Form 486 by the deadline, as your funding may be affected if filed late.