Radio Penalty Question Please Help

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lr204

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What type of fine or reprimand do you get if the license you are using expired in 2000 and you are still using the radio to transmit?
 
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Rayjk110

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Depend on if some old fart ham who likes to "feel special" in reporting people reports ya or not. It really all depends if someone's out on a power trip and feeling ham toughness enough to report you, or one of the FCC's many field agents hears the call being used and cross refrences it to their database (which they rarely do).
 

rescuecomm

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Travelers Rest, SC
It is illegal, but the pertinent thing to do is get the license re-issued asap. The frequency coordinator should be contacted immediately to see if there would be any problem to get re-licensed. I know about this because my squad has a repeater output frequency that "belonged" to a neighboring county and was used as a fireground command channel. The license had been expired over a year and was fair game according to the APCO guy. I did agree to share the freq if needed as the fireground talkaround use would cause only minimal interference to us. They other guys got on the ball fastl because they had some other stuff expired too. The local government city freq showed up with a new FCC callsign a couple of years ago for the same reason. It obviously expired while the renewal sat stuffed in someones desk.

This is not rare, but is cause for concern if you can't get relicensed.

Bob
 

mancow

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I don't know who they would report it to. I tried for an hour to find a number to the K.C. FCC field office one day.

I gave up.

...but think how great it would be to have a job like that. It comes with Fed retirement and you don't even have to answer the phone.
 
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N_Jay

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I think all the FCC fines are the same.
Up to $10,000 per occurrence.

When they get nasty they call each day an "occurrence".
 

N1508J

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Not allowed...infraction.
lr204 said:
What type of fine or reprimand do you get if the license you are using expired in 2000 and you are still using the radio to transmit?
None, till you get caught…or did you get caught? Better go ahead and renew your license IF you can if you didn't get caught. Go the FCC web site at http://wireless.fcc.gov/uls/ then click on licenses and enter your data. There you can find if your call has been issued to another. Best to stop using your transmitter since you KNOW your license is expired. Apply for a new license since you apparently need to transmit after 6 years of illegal operation. Take a look at the rules governing your class of operation…you do have a copy of the rules don’t you?? If you, kinda just lost your required copy, then go to the FCC site again and bring up the part for your class of operation and go to the section regarding violations. They can be nasty!
 

N4DES

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I'm going to assume this is a system license and if so, don't renew, go through the coordination process and get a new callsign on the same freq. Renewing it after it has expired is like pleading "guilty your honor to the charge of operating without a license" and the FCC has the ability to fine you if they want to.

Meanwhile get an STA to "legalize" your operation.

This process came from a Washington attorney who was assisting a local municipality get their freqs back after they let their license expire and ran for almost a year without a valid license.
 

mkh

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Jacksonville, FL
I'm appalled at the responses from Rayjk110 and denseglow.

It this is a ham license then transmitting without the license is illegal and hams have an obligation to police out ranks. If someone messes up and transmits a couple of times after the license expiration then there is probably no harm done but a consistent pattern of such behaviour hurts us all.

Ir204 - you didn't say if it was you or not but whoever it is should rectify the situation.

I'm not trying to start a flame war (though I may have), I just think we don't need to condone illegal transmission or we hurt ourselves. Who want to end up like the CB'ers?
 

n4voxgill

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If it is your ham license then there is a good chance you will be reported. If this is for your fire department then you could be interfering with another station that has been licensed since your license expired and will be found that way. It would also mean that the frequency is sitting there available and another user near you come up and either cover you up or you interfere. In any case the FCC would order the FD to shut down their radio. Better get it corrected.
 

denseglow

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I know of a lot of departments that have expired licences. A department near me uses 461.0375 for a TA frequency. (a two watt business freq) and They're on 25 watt mobiles... but everyone has thier own opinion.
 

awall

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Springfield, Missouri
The first thing that will happen if you get caught is the FCC will issue a warning letter with the violations listed. You will have 30 days to respond to the letter and tell them what you intend to do to fix the problem. You will only get fined if you continue use without getting proper license. Or fail to respond to the letter.
 

n4voxgill

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you may want to review what happend to the state of nevada. they let the license for their statewide 800 system expire and the FCC would not reissue the license. they lost millions of dollars as they had to change everything.
 

kb2vxa

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Hi Kyle and all,

Never mind the dancers, you asked a specific question so I'll give you a specific answer.

For any FCC violation the maximum penalty is $10,000 and/or 2 years imprisonment. The average fine is $7,500 and/or reconsideration of your application for renewal.

Yes, every illegal transmission is counted as a violation so the fines are additive. The FCC couldn't count every one in the case of the infamous Jack Gerritsen he sure racked up an awsome total so besides facing prison he's singing the line from 16 Tons by "Tennesee" Ernie Ford, "I owe my soul to the company store."

Oh Gil, what did I say about reconsidering an application for renewal? OUCH! I'll bet THAT smarts!

When you mess with the FCC...
 
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n4voxgill

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From the FCC website: "The Communications Act of 1934 authorizes the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to use civil monetary penalties as a means of enforcing Commission rules and regulations. The FCC can assess civil monetary penalties against those who violate Commission rules and regulations through either (1) an informal administrative process or (2) a formal evidentiary hearing. In the more commonly used administrative process, the Commission issues a Notice of Apparent Liability (NAL) which gives the charged party an opportunity to litigate the alleged violation and the proposed amount of the monetary penalty in a paper proceeding. Based on the pleadings submitted and the extenuating or aggravating circumstances presented, the Commission may then issue a Notice of Forfeiture (NOF), which sets the amount due. If the charged party refuses to pay the forfeiture, the Commission refers the matter to the Department of Justice for collection in district court where the charged party is entitled to a “trial de novo ” as to both liability and amount of forfeiture. The Commission may also assess a penalty after issuing a notice and conducting a full evidentiary hearing before an administrative law judge. After exhausting its administrative remedies, the charged party is entitled to seek judicial review in the United States Court of Appeals. If the violator refuses to pay the forfeiture after the Commission’s decision has become final the Commission must ask the Department of Justice (DOJ) to initiate a collection action in federal district court. However, unlike the informal NAL/NOF paper process, the collection action here is on a debt that is due and payable to the government."

The FCC does not have the power to give any jail time. After the Justice Dept. has filed a case for collection of an FCC assesment, the US District Court could order payment by a certain date and then hold the person in contempt. Jail time is given for violation of laws enacted by congress for specific actions.
 

n4voxgill

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A criminal complaint filed Wednesday afternoon charges Gerritsen with a felony charge of malicious interference with a communications system operated by the United States and a misdemeanor count of transmitting radio signals without a license. The two charges carry a potential penalty of 11 years in federal prison.

This was a criminal complaint filed by the US Attorney after investigation by the FBI with assistance from the FCC. This is the case that him a sentence in federal prison, the FCC fines still are outstanding.
 
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