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[OUCC] 10-Digit Dialing Underway in Indiana’s 317 Area Code
Start Date: 3/21/2016 All Day
End Date: 3/21/2016
Entry Description

Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) and Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor (OUCC)

News Release

 

10-Digit Dialing Underway in Indiana’s 317 Area Code
6-Month Transition Period to Help Consumers Prepare for Area Code Overlay
Mandatory 10-Digit Dialing Starts in September 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

INDIANAPOLIS (March 21, 2016) – Starting now, all consumers in central Indiana’s 317 telephone area code are encouraged to use 10 digits, rather than 7, to make local phone calls. (For example, callers should start dialing “317-555-5555” instead of “555-5555.”) This will help consumers ease into the transition to mandatory 10-digit dialing for local calls within the 317 area code.

Local calls made with either 7 or 10 digits will work from now through Sept. 16, 2016, to give consumers in the 317 area ample time to adjust to the new dialing pattern and to make any required system changes before 10-digit dialing becomes mandatory for local calls. This 6-month grace period started this weekend and is standard practice when new area codes are added.

The change to 10-digit dialing is necessary so the new 463 area code can be added to the region this fall. The new area code will “overlay” the entire 317 region. The “overlay” method has been used for all new area code additions in the United States since 2008, including the 812/930 overlay implemented in Southern Indiana last year. With the overlay, consumers are not required to change their existing phone numbers. 

The 317/463 overlay is being implemented in response to projections that all numbering supplies for 317 will be exhausted by the end of this year. To ensure a continuing supply of telephone numbers, the new 463 area code will be superimposed over the entire 317 region, which includes Indianapolis and most of its suburbs.

The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) approved the 317/463 overlay in April 2015, following a nine-month case that included a lengthy public comment period and five public field hearings throughout the Indianapolis metropolitan area. The telecommunications industry and the Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor (OUCC) filed testimony supporting the overlay method. Since April 2015, the area’s telecommunications service providers have worked together to ensure that the implementation of the 317/463 overlay runs smoothly. However, if you encounter any difficulties completing 10-digit calls, please contact your service provider immediately. 

Timeframe and Guidance for Consumers in the 317/463 Area

Effective now, you should use 10 digits whenever you place a local call from the 317 area code (dialing 317 followed by the number’s remaining digits). If you forget and dial just 7 digits (through Sept. 16, 2016), your call will still be completed. 

Starting on Sept. 17, 2016, you must use 10-digit dialing for all local phone calls. After this date, if you do not use the new dialing procedures, your call will not be completed and a recording will instruct you to hang up and dial again.

Beginning Oct. 17, 2016, numbers assigned for new telephone lines or services in the 317 region may include the new 463 area code.

During the 6-month transition period:  

  • You should start including the 317 area code together with your 7-digit local number when providing it to others.
  • Consumers, especially businesses, should ensure that all services, automatic-dialing equipment, applications, software, or other types of equipment recognize 463 as a valid area code.
  • You should make sure that all preprogrammed numbers for local calls are set to include the area code. Some examples are life safety systems, fax machines, Internet dial-up numbers, alarm and security systems, gates, speed dialers, mobile phone contact lists, call forwarding settings, voicemail services, and similar functions.
  • You should check any business stationery, advertising materials, personal checks, and personal or pet ID tags and microchips to ensure that the phone number includes the 317 area code.

Any safety and security equipment, including medical alert devices and alarm systems, must be programmed for mandatory 10-digit local dialing unless the calls are already directed to toll-free or long-distance telephone numbers. If you are not sure whether your equipment needs to be reprogrammed, contact your medical alert or security provider. All necessary reprogramming must be completed before Sept. 17, 2016. To avoid last-minute issues, consumers are strongly encouraged to address any needed changes as soon as possible.

During and after the transition:

  • Your telephone number, including current area code, will not change.
  • You will need to dial area code + telephone number (a total of 10 digits) for all local calls in the 317 area.
  • You will continue to dial 1 + area code + telephone number (a total of 11 digits) for all long-distance calls.
  • Calls that are local now will remain local.
  • The overlay will not change the price of a call, your coverage area, or other rates and services.
  • You can still dial three digits to reach 911, along with other universal three-digit numbers (211, 411, 711, and 811).

More information is available from your local telephone company. You also can learn more from the OUCC’s website at www.in.gov/oucc/2800.htm or the IURC’s website at www.in.gov/iurc/2808.htm.

# # #

Media Contacts:
OUCC: Anthony Swinger, (317) 233-2747 or aswinger@oucc.in.gov
IURC: Megan Wade-Taxter, (317) 233-4723 or mwadetaxter@urc.in.gov  

The Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor (OUCC) represents Indiana consumer interests before state and federal bodies that regulate utilities. As a state agency, the OUCC’s mission is to represent all Indiana consumers to ensure quality, reliable utility services at the most reasonable prices possible through dedicated advocacy, consumer education, and creative problem solving.

The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) is a fact-finding body that hears evidence in cases filed before it and makes decisions based on the evidence presented in those cases. An advocate of neither the public nor the utilities, the IURC is required by state statute to make decisions that balance the interests of all parties to ensure the utilities provide adequate and reliable service at reasonable rates.

 

Contact Information:
Name: Jointly Issued
Phone: See Above
Email: uccinfo@oucc.IN.gov
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Entry Type:
Press Release
Entry Category:
  • Announcements
  • Media Advisory
  • IN.gov Category:
  • Government
  • Residents
  • Agency Name
    Utility Consumer Counselor, Indiana Office of

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