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6/13/2019June NLAD Release


Updates to BQP Information

 

Beginning today, Thursday, June 13, any changes to Benefit Qualifying Person (BQP) information will require a de-enroll and re-enroll. 

If a Lifeline consumer needs to edit, remove, or add BQP information, they will need to:

  1. Inform their service provider so that their service provider can de-enroll them,
  2. Re-apply with the updated BQP information, and
  3. Inform their service provider once they have successfully re-applied. 

 

Once notified, their service provider can re-enroll them in the National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD). Please note this change applies to all BQP information, regardless if the consumer applied through the National Verifier or legacy workflow.

 

Changes to NLAD Address Field

 

After receiving feedback from service providers, USAC has updated the mailing address field for consumers in NLAD. With this release, service providers are able to input a general delivery address for a consumer into the mailing address field.  USAC is committed to collecting the best information possible to ensure all consumers receive timely notification of recertification, reverification, and other Lifeline Program processes.

6/4/2019Reminder: Scheduled System Maintenance, June 6


The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) and National Verifier production environments will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting on Thursday, June 6 from 9 p.m. until midnight ET.

NLAD and the National Verifier pre-production environments will be available for use during this time.

5/31/2019Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance


Scheduled System Maintenance, June 6

The National Lifeline Accountability Database and National Verifier production environments will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting on Thursday, June 6 from 9 p.m. until midnight ET.

NLAD and the National Verifier pre-production environments will be available for use during this time.

5/31/2019Lifeline Program Newsletter - May 2019


National Verifier Live in Additional States and Territories

The Lifeline National Verifier fully launched in the following localities on Tuesday, May 7, 2019

  • Alaska
  • American Samoa
  • District of Columbia
  • Delaware
  • Maine
  • Northern Mariana Islands
  • Rhode Island
  • U.S. Virgin Islands

Service providers in this launch are now required to use the National Verifier to check the eligibility of all Lifeline applicants before enrolling them into the Lifeline program. Consumers in these states and territories can apply for Lifeline directly through the National Verifier online consumer portal or by mailing a paper application to the Lifeline Support Center.

FCC and USAC Announce the Upcoming National Verifier Full Launch Date for Three Additional States

The National Verifier will fully launch in three additional states on Tuesday, June 11, 2019. As of that date, service providers in Indiana, Kentucky, and Michigan must use the National Verifier to determine the eligibility of all Lifeline applicants before enrolling them in the program. Service providers will only be able to enroll applicants in National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) if they have an active and approved eligibility decision from the National Verifier.

Consumers in these states who wish to apply for Lifeline through the National Verifier will be able to use the consumer portal at CheckLifeline.org/lifeline or submit a paper application directly to the Lifeline Support Center starting Tuesday, June 11, 2019.

Service providers in this launch will receive additional communications from USAC with specific information regarding the full launch of the National Verifier.

If you are a service provider in Indiana, Kentucky, and Michigan and have not received information about the full launch, email us at LifelineProgram@usac.org. 

National Verifier: New Enhancements Coming in June

USAC is excited to introduce new enhancements to the National Verifier. The June 2019 updates focus on streamlining the application workflow, including address verification.

Improvements to Application Process

The National Verifier will now:

  • Allow upload of eligibility documents for applications in Batch States prior to state eligibility response,
  • Specify rejection reasons for applications submitted via the National Verifier portal, and

Complete an automatic pin drop on the AMS mapping tool reflecting the approximate address location as entered by the user.

Upload of Eligibility Documents for Applications in "Pending Batch Decision" Status

Lifeline applications submitted in batch states (NC, TN, MO, and KY) that fail the federal data source check receive a “Pending Batch Decision” status. The applicant then waits 1-3 days to receive an eligibility response from the state.  Under the current workflow, users are able to submit documentation to resolve all errors except for eligibility prior to receiving an eligibility response.

In June 2019 USAC will update the application workflow to allow users to upload eligibility documentation while in the “Pending Batch Decision” status. This will enable users to submit all documentation to resolve all potential errors before receiving an eligibility response from the state. This will ensure a streamlined experience and reduce return visits to service providers to enroll in Lifeline.

Specific Rejection Reasons for Applications

An application submitted in the National Verifier may result in an error that requires additional documentation for the Lifeline Support Center to review.

Service providers and consumers often request clarification around why certain documents are rejected during this manual review.

USAC will now provide specific reasons why a document was rejected in the National Verifier. This update will enable consumers to better understand what is required for submission and qualification.

Automatic Pin Drop on the AMS Map

When a user enters an address in National Verifier, the system will transmit the information to the AMS mapping tool. Once a user reaches the AMS mapping tool screen, they will see a map along with a pin near or on the exact address provided in the application. Users will then need to simply verify that the pin drop is in the correct spot (or move the pin to the correct location) to proceed to the next section of the application.

For users who use a descriptive address, the tool will attempt to locate the exact address and drop the pin there. If the tool is unable to locate the exact address, a pin will drop within an approximate boundary (e.g. zip code) from the provided address.

Representative Accountability Database (RAD) Updates

In late June, USAC will begin implementing the Representative Accountability Database (RAD). The registration system will be used to validate the identities of service provider representatives that handle Lifeline program enrollments, recertifications, and other related transactions.

Representatives and service providers will interact with the RAD in the following ways:

  • Representatives will self-register for their Representative ID,
  • Representatives will take their Representative ID to all service providers for which they perform Lifeline transactions so that the ID can be linked to their National Verifier and National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) accounts,
  • USAC will monitor representatives’ transactions for potentially fraudulent activity and lock out representatives when appropriate, and
  • Service providers will regularly confirm that the representatives linked to their accounts should remain linked to their accounts through the RAD Confirmation process.

Representatives that perform any of the following Lifeline transactions will require a Representative ID:

  • Individuals directly interfacing with potential subscribers to enroll them in Lifeline,
  • Immediate supervisors of individuals directly interacting with potential subscribers to complete Lifeline enrollments,
    Individuals that contract directly with ETCs and oversee or manage several teams of people working to complete Lifeline enrollments,
  • Individuals that either assist subscribers with recertification or prepare subscriber information for recertification and submission to the National Verifier or NLAD,
  • Customer service representatives that update PII for existing Lifeline subscribers, and

Back office individuals that conduct manual eligibility reviews of subscriber enrollment or recertification information that is initially submitted through an electronic system (such as an online portal or ETC billing system).

The registration period for service provider representatives will begin in late June. When the registration period begins, all existing representatives will be asked to register for a Representative ID. Service providers will be given time to test linking a Representative’s ID to their respective accounts before RAD is fully implemented. USAC anticipates that RAD will be fully implemented in the fourth quarter of this year.

NLAD API Specification Changes

As mentioned above and during the May Webinar, transactions submitted to the National Verifier and NLAD will be associated with a Representative ID. The NLAD API Specifications will be updated to account for this change. To receive the revised NLAD API Specification, email LifelineSupport@usac.org with the subject line RAD - NLAD API Specs.

These changes will include the Representative ID as a conditional field for the transaction types listed above. The change will also include a conditional field that can be used to indicate a representative was not involved in the transaction, such as when an application is submitted independently by a consumer through a carrier’s online enrollment system. Service providers will be able to test these changes in the NLAD pre-production environment in early third quarter 2019.

June Monthly Webinar: The Representative Accountability Database (RAD) Registration Process

Join us on Wednesday, June 12 for our next Lifeline Program webinar. During this webinar, we will discuss the first phase of the Representative Accountability Database (RAD).  We will give an overview of the system, discuss the representative registration process and provide high-level information on the process to link Representative IDs to the respective service providers. Once we share our material, we will take provider questions.

This session is designed for service providers and Lifeline stakeholders in all states and territories. You can access the slides and recordings from previous webinars on our Learn: Webinars page.

Consumer Advocate Training on June 19

USAC is hosting a Consumer Advocate training for advocates in all states and territories on Wednesday, June 19 from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. ET. This training will provide a high-level overview of how advocates can educate consumers about the Lifeline program. USAC is committed to helping consumers navigate the new system and this training is meant to help consumer advocates, caseworkers, and others in the consumer support industry serve as a significant resource for consumers during the rollout of the National Verifier.

You can register for the training here. Please share this invitation with your colleagues or other consumer advocates. To be added to the consumer advocate distribution list, where you will receive additional updates for those that work directly with consumers, email LifelineProgram@usac.org. 

5/28/2019Resolved: National Verifier, NLAD, and LCS Systems Notification


Resolved: National Verifier, NLAD, and LCS Intermittent Connectivity Issues

Connectivity to the National Verifier, National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD), and Lifeline Claims System (LCS) has been fully restored. USAC has been monitoring the issues closely and was able to stabilize the systems yesterday afternoon and confirm their ongoing stability this morning.

Users should now be able to perform all transactions successfully. If you continue to experience issues, please email NLADsupport@usac.org.

5/20/2019Reminder: Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance


Reminder: NLAD Pre-Production Scheduled System Maintenance, May 21

The NLAD pre-production environment will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting on Tuesday, May 21 from 10 a.m. until noon ET

The National Verifier pre-production and production environments, as well as the NLAD production environment, will be available for use during this time.

Reminder: National Verifier Scheduled System Maintenance, May 24

The National Verifier will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting on Friday, May 24 from 8 p.m. until midnight ET. The National Verifier pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

The NLAD legacy workflow will no longer be impacted; however, NLAD users will not be able to perform verify, enroll, or transfer transactions using NLAD’s National Verifier mode.

5/15/2019Reminder: Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance


Reminder: Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance, May 17

The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD), National Verifier, and Lifeline Claims System (LCS) will be unavailable due to the May monthly maintenance starting Friday, May 17 from 10 p.m. until 2 a.m. ET.

NLAD, National Verifier, and LCS pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

Reminder: Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance, May 24

NLAD and the National Verifier will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting on Friday, May 24 from 8 p.m. until midnight ET

NLAD and the National Verifier pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

NLAD Pre-Production Scheduled System Maintenance, May 21

The NLAD pre-production environment will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting on Tuesday, May 21 from 10 a.m. until noon ET
 
The National Verifier pre-production and production environments as well as the NLAD production environment will be available for use during this time.

5/13/2019USAC Call Centers Capacity Restored


Capacity has been restored for the call centers for the High Cost, Rural Healthcare, and Schools and Libraries programs and the Lifeline Support Center.

5/10/2019USAC Announce National Verifier Full (Hard) Launch for March 2019 Launch


Indiana, Kentucky, and Michigan Full (Hard) Launch

Today the FCC and USAC announced that the Lifeline National Verifier will fully launch in Indiana, Kentucky, and Michigan on Tuesday, June 11, 2019.

At that time, service providers in the March 2019 launch must check all Lifeline applicants’ eligibility through the National Verifier.

At the full (hard) launch, consumers who wish to apply for Lifeline directly through the National Verifier can use the consumer portal or submit a paper application directly to the Lifeline Support Center.

5/7/2019February 2019 Launch Fully Launches in the National Verifier


February 2019 Launch Hard Launch

Today, Tuesday, May 7, the Lifeline National Eligibility Verifier (National Verifier) fully launched in the following localities: 

  • Alaska
  • American Samoa
  • District of Columbia
  • Delaware
  • Maine
  • Northern Mariana Islands
  • Rhode Island
  • U.S. Virgin Islands
Service providers in this launch must use the National Verifier to check the eligibility of all Lifeline applicants before enrolling them in the program.

Consumers in this launch can apply for Lifeline directly through the National Verifier online consumer portal at CheckLifeline.org/lifeline or by mailing a paper application to the Lifeline Support Center.


For more information specific to the February 2019 launch, visit USAC’s website.

5/1/2019Lifeline Program Newsletter - April 2019


FCC and USAC Announce National Verifier Full (Hard) Launch Date for the February 2019 Launch States and Territories

The National Verifier will fully launch in the following localities on Tuesday, May 7, 2019.


  • Alaska
  • American Samoa
  • District of Columbia
  • Delaware
  • Maine
  • Northern Mariana Islands
  • Rhode Island
  • U.S. Virgin Islands


As of that date, service providers in the February 2019 launch must use the National Verifier to determine the eligibility of all Lifeline applicants before enrolling them in the program. Service providers will be only able to enroll applicants in the National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) if they have an active and approved eligibility decision from the National Verifier.

Consumers in these localities who wish to apply for Lifeline through the National Verifier will be able to use the consumer portal at CheckLifeline.org/lifeline or submit a paper application by mail directly to the Lifeline Support Center starting Tuesday, May 7, 2019.

Service providers in localities that are part of this launch will receive additional communications from USAC with specific information regarding the full (hard) launch of the National Verifier.

If you are a service provider in one of the states, territories, or district that are part of this launch and have not received information about the full (hard) launch, email us at LifelineProgram@usac.org.

National Verifier April 2019 Enhancements are live in the Production Environment

On Monday, April 15, USAC released new enhancements to the National Verifier portal for consumers in CO, MS, MT, NM, UT, and WY. These enhancements allow consumers in these states, which were soft launched in June 2018 (Launch 1), the ability to start using the recertification portal to complete their annual recertification.
 
Recertification is an annual requirement for Lifeline subscribers and is separate from reverification (one-time National Verifier process). This process is conducted to ensure that active Lifeline subscribers are still eligible for the Lifeline benefit.

Service Provider Portal 

Service providers will be prevented from submitting an application for a consumer who has yet to complete recertification. The National Verifier portal will instead provide the options available for a subscriber to complete recertification. These options include recertifying online via the National Verifier consumer portal, by phone, or by mailing in a recertification form to the Lifeline Support Center. Once recertification is complete for the subscriber the regular features on the portal will be available.

Consumer Portal

If a subscriber logs into the National Verifier consumer portal while in a 60-day self-certification window, the subscriber will be automatically directed to complete and submit their recertification.

Service Provider Portal Sign In

USAC has received calls from service providers who are unsure of where they log in. As a reminder, service providers can access the National Verifier service provider portal by visiting CheckLifeline.org/lifeline. From this page, service providers select “Sign in as a Service Provider” in the middle of the page.

The “Sign In” button on the top right of the screen is for the consumer portal. Service providers are unable to access to the National Verifier service provider portal by clicking there. 

Now, service providers can also go directly to the National Verifier service provider portal login page by visiting https://www.checklifeline.org/lifeline?id=nv_sp_bpo_login. From here, service providers in National Verifier soft or hard (full) launch states can access the portal.

For more information on the National Verifier web portal and how to use it, visit the National Verifier How to Use it web page.

To reference the National Verifier v6.0 Production Release Notes, please visit USAC’s website.

Webinar on May 8: Representative Accountability Database (RAD) Overview

Join us on Wednesday, May 8 for our next Lifeline Program webinar. The topic is an introduction to the Representative Accountability Database (RAD) where we will give an introduction to the new system, provide a high-level overview, and take provider questions.

This session is designed for service providers and Lifeline stakeholders in all states and territories.

You can access the slides and recordings from previous webinars on our Learn: Webinars page.

4/24/2019Reminder: Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance, April 26


The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD), National Verifier, and Lifeline Claims System (LCS) will be unavailable due to the April monthly maintenance starting Friday, April 26 from 10 p.m. until 2 a.m. ET.

NLAD, National Verifier, and LCS pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

4/12/2019Reminder: Scheduled National Verifier Maintenance, April 15


The National Verifier production environment will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting on Monday, April 15 from 8 p.m. until midnight ET. Additionally, NLAD users will not be able to perform verify, enroll, or transfer transactions using NLAD’s National Verifier mode.

The National Verifier pre-production environment will no longer be impacted by this maintenance and will be available during this time. NLAD users will also still be able to use the legacy workflow and reports in the production environment.

4/5/2019Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance


Scheduled Lifeline Claims System Maintenance, April 9

The Lifeline Claims System (LCS) production environment will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting on Tuesday, April 9 at 9 p.m. ET.

The outage is expectated to last one hour. The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) pre-production and production environments, as well as the LCS pre-production environment, will be available for using during this time.

Scheduled National Verifier Maintenance, April 15

The National Verifier pre-production and production environment will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting on Monday, April 15 from 8 p.m. until midnight ET. Additionally, NLAD users will not be able to perform verify, enroll, or transfer transactions using NLAD’s National Verifier mode.

During this time, NLAD users will still be able to use the legacy workflow and reports in the production environment.

4/5/2019USAC Announces National Verifier Full (Hard) Launch for February 2019 Launch


Today, the FCC and USAC announced that the Lifeline National Verifier will fully launch in the following localities on Tuesday, May 7, 2019:

  • Alaska
  • American Samoa
  • District of Columbia
  • Delaware
  • Maine
  • Northern Mariana Islands
  • Rhode Island
  • U.S. Virgin Islands 


At that time, service providers in the February 2019 launch must check all Lifeline applicants’ eligibility through the National Verifier.

At the full (hard) launch, consumers who wish to apply for Lifeline directly through the National Verifier can use the consumer portal or submit a paper application directly to the Lifeline Support Center. USAC will share more information with service providers in the February 2019 Launch shortly. 

3/27/2019Reminder: Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance, March 29


The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD), National Verifier, and Lifeline Claims System (LCS) will be unavailable due to the March monthly maintenance starting Friday, March 29 from 10 p.m. until 2 a.m. ET.

NLAD, National Verifier, and LCS pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

3/20/2019Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance, March 22 and 29


Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance, March 22
 
The National Verifier pre-production and production environment will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting Friday, March 22 10 p.m. until 2 a.m. ET. Additionally, National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) users will not be able to perform verify, enroll, or transfer transactions using NLAD’s National Verifier mode.

During this time, NLAD users will still be able to use the legacy workflow and reports in the production environment.

Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance, March 29

The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD), National Verifier, and Lifeline Claims System (LCS) will be unavailable due to the March monthly maintenance starting Friday, March 29 from 10 p.m. until 2 a.m. ET.

NLAD, National Verifier, and LCS pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

3/20/2019Lifeline Program Newsletter - March 2019


The March 2019 issue of Lifeline Program News is now available. Sign up to receive the newsletter by email in the Subscription Center

March headlines:

  • Coming Soon: Representative Accountability Database (RAD)
  • National Verifier: March Launches
  • National Verifier March 2019 Enhancements are live in the Production Environment
  • Submitting Lifeline Reimbursement Claims in LCS Outside Administrative Window
  • National Verifier Outreach Lists - Sign up for Future Launch Information
  • Webinar on April 10: Overview of the Lifeline Claims System (LCS)

3/8/2019FCC and USAC Announce March 2019 National Verifier Launch


Indiana, Kentucky, and Michigan Will Soft Launch on March 12

Today the FCC and USAC announced that the Lifeline National Verifier will soft launch in Indiana, Kentucky, and Michigan on Tuesday, March 12, 2019. At that time, service providers in the March 2019 Launch can begin using the National Verifier to determine subscriber eligibility through the service provider portal or by sending paper forms to the Lifeline Support Center.

During the soft launch period, service providers can continue using their legacy eligibility checking procedures if they choose.

Recertification & Reverification

Beginning at soft launch, March 12, service providers in the March 2019 Launch should not start any new 2019 recertification batches for consumers in the above-referenced states. Any recertification batches that are already underway must be completed.

USAC will conduct reverification – a one-time process to ensure that all Lifeline subscribers meet the program’s eligibility requirements – for all subscribers in this launch. USAC will send additional information about the reverification process shortly.

Launch Training and Support

Service providers in the March 2019 Launch can visit the National Verifier Training page for additional information about the soft launch period including a pre-production user guide, instructions to create National Verifier credentials, and information about upcoming training sessions.

Service providers in this launch are encouraged to attend the National Verifier For Newcomers training on Thursday, March 14 at 3 p.m. ET to ask questions about the March soft launch period.

About the National Verifier


The National Verifier shifts the responsibility for determining a consumer's Lifeline eligibility from phone and internet service providers to the program's administrator, the Universal Service Administrative Company. The National Verifier will establish whether a consumer is eligible by electronically querying state and federal data sources, and if necessary, manually reviewing supporting documents. An overview of the National Verifier can be found on USAC's website

3/1/2019Reminder: Upcoming Scheduled Production Maintenance, March 4


The National Verifier production environment will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting Monday, March 4 from 8 p.m. to midnight ET. Additionally, National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) users will not be able to perform verify, enroll, or transfer transactions using NLAD’s National Verifier mode.

During this time, NLAD users will still be able to use the legacy workflow and reports in the production environment. NLAD and National Verifier pre-production environments will also be available for use during this time.

Please Note: We are implementing updates to the URL settings related to this deployment. If you experience difficulty accessing the National Verifier portal, USAC recommends either clearing your browser’s cache or directly adding “/lifeline” to the end of the URL. (http://checklifeline.org/lifeline)

2/25/2019Lifeline Program Newsletter - February 2019


The February 2019 issue of Lifeline Program News is now available. Sign up to receive the newsletter by email in the Subscription Center

February headlines:

  • National Verifier Live in Additional States, Territories, and the District of Columbia
  • FCC and USAC Announce National Verifier Full (Hard) Launch Date for Missouri, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee
  • 2019 Federal Poverty Guidelines Updated
  • New Enhancements Coming to National Verifier Portal
  • Submitting Lifeline Reimbursement Claims in LCS outside Administrative Window
  • Lifeline Support Center Acceptable Material
  • Reminder: Keep NLAD Up-To-Date
  • Webinar on March 13: NLAD Refresher


2/25/2019Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance, March 4


The National Verifier production environment will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting Monday, March 4 from 8 p.m. to midnight ET. Additionally, National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) users will not be able to perform verify, enroll, or transfer transactions using NLAD’s National Verifier mode.

During this time, NLAD users will still be able to use the legacy workflow and reports in the production environment. NLAD and National Verifier pre-production environments will also be available for use during this time.

2/21/2019Reminder: NLAD Security Update, March 7


Beginning Thursday, March 7, 2019, NLAD will no longer accept TLS 1.0. From this date forward, NLAD API and web users must use TLS 1.1 or 1.2. Service providers will receive an error when attempting to perform transactions in NLAD if they do not make the change by March 7.

2/19/2019Reminder: Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance


Reminder: Upcoming Scheduled Pre-Production Maintenance, February 20

The National Verifier pre-production environment will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting Wednesday, February 20 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. ET. Additionally, National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) users will not be able to perform verify, enroll, or transfer transactions using NLAD’s National Verifier mode.

During this time, NLAD users will still be able to use the legacy workflow and reports in the pre-production environment. NLAD and National Verifier production environments will also be available for use.

Reminder: Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance, February 22

NLAD, National Verifier, and Lifeline Claims System (LCS) will be unavailable due to February's monthly maintenance starting Friday, February 22 from 10 p.m. until 2 a.m. ET.

NLAD, National Verifier, and LCS pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

1/25/2019NLAD Security Update: March 2019


NLAD is upgrading its security settings. Beginning Thursday, March 7, 2019, NLAD will no longer accept TLS 1.0.

From March 7 onward, NLAD API and web users must use TLS 1.1 or 1.2. Service providers will receive an error when attempting to perform transactions in NLAD if they do not make the change by March 7.