Understanding Your Home Phone Bill

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How Can I Decipher My Home Phone Bill?

Understanding Your Home Phone Bill

Phone bills, whether received online or in paper form, usually summarize their charges in the following manner, with some variations from phone company to phone company:

1) At the top there is a summary of charges, showing previous balances, payment received and current balance.

2) Next is a list of the products and services you currently use.

3) If you subscribe to both local and long distance services from the same carrier, the next section is a summary of your local services, starting with the features you have and their monthly cost.

4) Other charges and credits are listed, including any premises work you may have had completed.

5) Taxes and surcharges are listed in a separate section. This is often the most confusing section in the entire bill but many phone companies include an explanation of these charges on their website.

6) Next comes a description of your long distance services and charges, if you use the same carrier. If you use a separate carrier, this information will be supplied on a separate bill from that carrier. If you do have service from your local carrier and have a package deal, in-package and out-of-package charges will be summarized here.

7) A section called Other Charges and Credits is usually next, which usually only contains your Universal Connectivity Charge, also called the FCC Universal Service Fund, Federal Universal Service Fee, Carrier Universal Service Charge or Local Service Subsidy. This is a percentage charge that goes to the FCC that everyone has to pay.

8) Last, but not least is a section that summarizes your federal and state taxes.



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