Important Notice for California Prepaid Wireless Customers

Find out about changes in California law effective January 1, 2019 that will affect prepaid wireless service.

Details

Since 2016, California law has required all sellers of prepaid wireless service to collect certain taxes, fees and mandatory surcharges from prepaid consumers at the time of purchase. The taxes, fees and surcharges were combined into a single Prepaid Mobile Telephony Surcharge or "Prepaid MTS Surcharge." Pursuant to a court order and an order from the California Public Utilities Commission, the Prepaid MTS Surcharge has been replaced effective January 1, 2019. All carriers offering prepaid wireless services must continue to collect these certain taxes, fees and mandatory surcharges from prepaid consumers, but the amounts will no longer be combined into a single charge. 

Taxes and fees formerly included in the Prepaid Mobile Telephony Surcharge are included in the monthly rate plan charge, so your monthly payment will not change.  

Below is a detailed description of the taxes, fee, and surcharges collected on behalf of state and local governments:

  • Utility User Tax: A tax imposed by some cities and counties to fund local services. Tax rates will vary depending on the locality where the service is purchased. Please contact your city or county government for more information.
  • Local 911 Emergency Telephone Service Access Charge: A tax imposed by some cities to support local 9-1-1 emergency response systems. Tax rates will vary depending on the locality where the service is purchased. Please contact your city or county government for more information.
  • California Public Utilities Commission Telecommunications All-End-User Surcharges totaling 6.94% and User Fee of 0.33% on Commission-regulated services: Mandated charges that support various public programs and Public Utilities Commission activities.
  • California 911 Emergency Telephone Users Surcharge of 0.75% on Commission-regulated services. A mandatory statewide surcharge imposed by the California Office of Emergency Services to support the 9-1-1 emergency response system.

These taxes and fees will be separately identified on your bill and will vary depending on locality because some cities and counties do not impose a Utility User Tax or a Local 911 Charge, and cities and counties with Utility User Taxes or local 911 Charges have different rates. However, your total charges will not change.

If you still have questions, you can call us by dialing 611 from your mobile phone or by calling us at 800-CRICKET (274-2538).