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Communications Bill


Communications Bill
Part 2 — Networks, services and the radio spectrum
Chapter 1 — Electronic communications networks and services

    54

 

 53    Orders by OFCOM in the absence of conditions under s. 50

     (1)    OFCOM may make an order under this section if, at any time, they consider in

relation to any one or more public communications providers—

           (a)           that it is not practicable, or at least not appropriate, for OFCOM’s duties

under subsections (1) and (3) of section 50 to be performed in a

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particular respect by the setting of general conditions; and

           (b)           that it is necessary to make the order for the purpose—

                  (i)                 of securing the necessary protection for the customers of that

provider or of those providers; or

                  (ii)                of securing compliance with a Community  obligation.

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     (2)    An order under this section may make such of the following provisions as

OFCOM think fit—

           (a)           provision imposing requirements with respect to the complaints and

disputes mentioned in section 50(2);

           (b)           provision for the enforcement of those requirements;

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           (c)           provision making other arrangements for the purposes of those

requirements.

     (3)    The power to make provision by an order under this section includes, in

particular—

           (a)           power to establish a body corporate with the capacity to make its own

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rules and to establish its own procedures;

           (b)           power to determine the jurisdiction of a body established by such an

order or, for the purposes of the order, of any other person;

           (c)           power to confer jurisdiction with respect to any matter on OFCOM

themselves;

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           (d)           power to provide for a person on whom jurisdiction is conferred by the

arrangements to make awards of compensation, to direct the

reimbursement of costs or expenses, or to do both;

           (e)           power to provide for such a person to enforce, or to participate in the

enforcement of, any awards or directions made under such an order;

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and

           (f)           power to make such other provision as OFCOM think fit for the

enforcement of such awards and directions.

     (4)    An order under this section may require such public communications

providers as may be determined by or under the order to make payments to

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OFCOM in respect of expenditure incurred by OFCOM in connection with—

           (a)           the establishment and maintenance, in accordance with such an order,

of a body corporate or of a procedure; or

           (b)           the making of any other arrangements for the purposes of the

requirements of such an order.

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     (5)    The consent of the Secretary of State is required for the making by OFCOM of

an order under this section.

     (6)    Section 400 applies to the power of OFCOM to make an order under this

section.

     (7)    A statutory instrument containing an order made by OFCOM under this

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section shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either

House of Parliament.

 

 

Communications Bill
Part 2 — Networks, services and the radio spectrum
Chapter 1 — Electronic communications networks and services

    55

 

General conditions: telephone numbers

 54    The National Telephone Numbering Plan

     (1)    It shall be the duty of OFCOM to publish a document (to be known as “the

National Telephone Numbering Plan”) setting out—

           (a)           the numbers that they have determined to be available for allocation by

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them as telephone numbers;

           (b)           such restrictions as they consider appropriate on the adoption of

numbers available for allocation in accordance with the plan; and

           (c)           such restrictions as they consider appropriate on the other uses to

which numbers available for allocation in accordance with the plan

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may be put.

     (2)    It shall be OFCOM’s duty—

           (a)           from time to time to review the National Telephone Numbering Plan;

and

           (b)           to make any revision of that plan that they think fit in consequence of

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such a review;

            but this duty must be performed in compliance with the requirements, so far

as applicable, of section 58.

     (3)    OFCOM must also keep such day to day records as they consider appropriate

of the telephone numbers allocated by them in accordance with the National

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Telephone Numbering Plan.

     (4)    The publication of the National Telephone Numbering Plan, or of a revision of

it, must be in such manner as appears to OFCOM to be appropriate for bringing

the contents of the Plan, or of the revised Plan, to the attention of such persons

as OFCOM consider appropriate.

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     (5)    In this Chapter references to a telephone number are (subject to subsection (7))

references to any number that is used (whether or not in connection with

telephony) for any one or more of the following purposes—

           (a)           identifying the destination for, or recipient of, an electronic

communication;

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           (b)           identifying the origin, or sender, of an electronic communication;

           (c)           identifying the route for an electronic communication;

           (d)           identifying the source from which an electronic communication or

electronic communications service may be obtained or accessed;

           (e)           selecting the service that is to be obtained or accessed, or required

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elements or characteristics of that service; or

           (f)           identifying the communications provider by means of whose network

or service an electronic communication is to be transmitted, or treated

as transmitted.

     (6)    In this Chapter references to the adoption of a telephone number by a

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communications provider are references to his doing any of the following in

relation to a number allocated (whether or not to that provider) by OFCOM—

           (a)           allocating or transferring that number to a particular customer or piece

of apparatus;

           (b)           using that number for identifying a service or route used by that

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provider or by any of his customers;

 

 

Communications Bill
Part 2 — Networks, services and the radio spectrum
Chapter 1 — Electronic communications networks and services

    56

 

           (c)           using that number for identifying a communication as one to be

transmitted by that provider;

           (d)           designating that number for use in selecting a service or the required

elements or characteristics of a service;

           (e)           authorising the use of that number by others for any of the purposes

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mentioned in subsection (5).

     (7)    The Secretary of State may by order exclude such numbers as may be described

in the order from the numbers that are to be treated as telephone numbers for

the purposes of this Chapter.

     (8)    No order is to be made containing provision authorised by subsection (7)

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unless a draft of the order has been laid before Parliament and approved by a

resolution of each House.

     (9)    References in this section to the allocation of a number are references to its

allocation for the purposes of general conditions under section 56 or in

accordance with conditions under section 57.

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     (10)   In this section—

                    “electronic communication” means a communication for transmission by

means of an electronic communications network; and

                    “number” includes data of any description.

 55    Conditions to secure access to telephone numbers

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     (1)    General conditions may impose such requirements as OFCOM consider

appropriate for securing that every end-user of a public electronic

communications service is able, by means of that service—

           (a)           to make calls or otherwise transmit electronic communications to every

normal telephone number; and

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           (b)           to receive every call or other electronic communication that is made or

transmitted to him using such a service from apparatus identified by a

normal telephone number.

     (2)    A normal telephone number is one which—

           (a)           has been made available, in accordance with the National Telephone

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Numbering Plan, as a number to be used for the purpose of identifying

the destination for, or the recipient of, electronic communications; and

           (b)           is for the time being—

                  (i)                 a number adopted by a communications provider to be used for

such a purpose; or

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                  (ii)                a number in use for such a purpose by a person other than a

communications provider to whom it has been allocated in

accordance with conditions under section 57.

     (3)    In this section “electronic communication” has the same meaning as in section

54.

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 56    Conditions about allocation and adoption of numbers

     (1)    General conditions may include conditions which—

           (a)           prohibit the adoption of telephone numbers by a communications

provider except in cases where the numbers have been allocated by

OFCOM to a person;

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Communications Bill
Part 2 — Networks, services and the radio spectrum
Chapter 1 — Electronic communications networks and services

    57

 

           (b)           regulate the use by a communications provider, for the purpose of

providing an electronic communications network or electronic

communications service, of telephone numbers not allocated to that

provider;

           (c)           impose restrictions on the adoption of telephone numbers by a

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communications provider, and on other practices by communications

providers in relation to telephone numbers allocated to them;

           (d)           impose requirements on a communications provider in connection

with the adoption by him of telephone numbers;

           (e)           require an allocation of particular telephone numbers to be transferred

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from one communications provider to another in the circumstances

provided for in the conditions;

           (f)           impose such requirements and restrictions on a communications

provider from whom an allocation is required to be transferred as may

be provided for, in relation to the transfer, in the conditions;

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           (g)           require payments of such amounts as may be determined by OFCOM

to be made to them by a person in respect of the allocation to him of

telephone numbers;

           (h)           require payments of such amounts as may be determined by OFCOM

to be made to them by a person in respect of transfers of allocations

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from one person to another; and

           (i)           require communications providers to secure compliance with such

rules relating to the use of telephone numbers by their customers as

OFCOM may set out in general conditions or determine in accordance

with provision made by the general conditions.

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     (2)    General conditions may also—

           (a)           provide for the procedure to be followed on the making of applications

to OFCOM for the allocation of telephone numbers;

           (b)           provide for the information that must accompany such applications

and for the handling of such applications;

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           (c)           provide a procedure for telephone numbers to be reserved pending the

making and disposal of an application for their allocation;

           (d)           provide for the procedure to be followed on the making of applications

for telephone numbers to be reserved, and for the handling of such

applications;

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           (e)           regulate the procedures to be followed, the system to be applied and

the charges to be imposed for the purposes of, or in connection with, the

adoption by a communications provider of telephone numbers

allocated to that provider;

           (f)           regulate the procedures to be followed, the system to be applied and

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the charges to be imposed for the purposes of, or in connection with, the

transfer of an allocation from one person to another.

     (3)    The conditions that may be set under subsection (1)(d) include conditions

imposing requirements with respect to the provision of information for

purposes connected with—

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           (a)           the compilation of directories; and

           (b)           the provision of directory enquiry facilities.

     (4)    The procedure to be followed on the making of an application for the allocation

of numbers that are available for allocation in accordance with the National

Telephone Numbering Plan must require OFCOM’s determination of the

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application to be made—

 

 

Communications Bill
Part 2 — Networks, services and the radio spectrum
Chapter 1 — Electronic communications networks and services

    58

 

           (a)           in the case of an application made in response to an invitation in

accordance with subsection (5), before the end of six weeks after the day

on which the application is received; and

           (b)           in any other case, before the end of three weeks after that day.

     (5)    Where OFCOM are proposing to allocate any telephone numbers, they may—

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           (a)           invite persons to indicate the payments each would be willing to make

to OFCOM if allocated the numbers; and

           (b)           make the allocation according to the amounts indicated.

     (6)    General conditions providing for payments to be made to OFCOM in respect

of anything mentioned in subsection (1)(g) or (h)—

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           (a)           must set out the principles according to which the amounts of the

payments are to be determined;

           (b)           may provide for the payments to consist of a lump sum in respect of a

particular allocation or transfer or of sums payable periodically while

an allocation remains in force, or of both;

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           (c)           may provide for the amounts to be determined by reference to—

                  (i)                 any indication according to which the allocation has been made

as mentioned in subsection (5); or

                  (ii)                any other factors (including the costs incurred by OFCOM in

connection with the carrying out of their functions by virtue of

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section 54 and this section) as OFCOM think fit.

     (7)    General conditions may—

           (a)           make modifications from time to time of, or of the method of

determining, the amounts of periodic payments falling to be made by

virtue of conditions containing provision authorised by this section;

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and

           (b)           make different provision in relation to different descriptions of

communications provider and different descriptions of telephone

number.

     (8)    Nothing in subsection (7) authorises the modification, after it has been fixed, of

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the amount of a periodic payment fixed in accordance with arrangements

made in relation to numbers allocated as mentioned in subsection (5)(b).

     (9)    Payments that are required to be made to OFCOM in respect of anything

mentioned in subsection (1)(g) or (h)—

           (a)           must be paid to them as soon as they become due in accordance with

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the conditions imposing the obligation to pay; and

           (b)           if not so paid, are to be recoverable by them accordingly.

 57    Telephone numbering conditions binding non-providers

     (1)    OFCOM may set conditions under this section that apply to persons other than

communications providers and relate to—

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           (a)           the allocation of telephone numbers to such persons;

           (b)           the transfer of allocations to and from such persons; and

           (c)           the use of telephone numbers by such persons.

     (2)    The conditions that may be set under this section include conditions imposing

obligations corresponding to any of the obligations that may be imposed on

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Communications Bill
Part 2 — Networks, services and the radio spectrum
Chapter 1 — Electronic communications networks and services

    59

 

communications providers by general conditions making provision for, or in

connection with—

           (a)            the allocation of telephone numbers;

           (b)            the transfer of allocations; or

           (c)           the use of telephone numbers.

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     (3)    Subsection (10) of section 43 applies to OFCOM’s power to set a condition

under this section as it applies to their power to set a condition under that

section.

     (4)    Sections 45 to 47 apply in relation to—

           (a)           the setting of conditions under this section and the modification and

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revocation of such conditions; and

           (b)           the giving, modification or withdrawal of any direction, approval or

consent for the purposes of a condition under this section,

            as they apply in the case of general conditions and in the case of directions,

approvals and consents given for the purposes of general conditions.

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     (5)    It shall be the duty of a person who—

           (a)           is not a communications provider, but

           (b)           applies for the allocation of a telephone number, or is allocated such a

number,

            to comply with any conditions set under this section.

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     (6)    That duty shall be enforceable in civil proceedings by OFCOM—

           (a)           for an injunction;

           (b)           for specific performance of a statutory duty under section 45 of the

Court of Session Act 1988 (c. 36); or

           (c)           for any other appropriate remedy or relief.

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     (7)    Subsection (6) does not apply in the case of a person against whom the

obligations contained in the condition in question are enforceable (by virtue of

his having become a communications provider) as obligations imposed by

general conditions.

 58    Modification of documents referred to in numbering conditions

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     (1)    This section applies where numbering conditions for the time being have effect

by reference to provisions, as they have effect from time to time, of—

           (a)           the National Telephone Numbering Plan; or

           (b)           another document published by OFCOM.

     (2)    OFCOM must not revise or otherwise modify the relevant provisions unless

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they are satisfied that the revision or modification is—

           (a)           objectively justifiable in relation to the matters to which it relates;

           (b)           not such as to discriminate unduly against particular persons or against

a particular description of persons;

           (c)           proportionate to what the modification is intended to achieve; and

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           (d)           in relation to what it is intended to achieve, transparent.

     (3)    Before revising or otherwise modifying the relevant provisions, OFCOM must

publish a notification—

           (a)           stating that they are proposing to do so;

 

 

Communications Bill
Part 2 — Networks, services and the radio spectrum
Chapter 1 — Electronic communications networks and services

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           (b)           specifying the Plan or other document that they are proposing to revise

or modify;

           (c)           setting out the effect of their proposed revisions or modifications;

           (d)           giving their reasons for making the proposal; and

           (e)           specifying the period within which representations may be made to

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OFCOM about their proposal.

     (4)    That period must be one ending not less than one month after the day of the

publication of the notification.

     (5)    OFCOM may give effect, with or without modifications, to a proposal with

respect to which they have published a notification under subsection (3) only

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if—

           (a)           they have considered every representation about the proposal that is

made to them within the period specified in the notification; and

           (b)           they have had regard to every international obligation of the United

Kingdom (if any) which has been notified to them for the purposes of

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this paragraph by the Secretary of State.

     (6)    The publication of a notification under this section must be in such manner as

appears to OFCOM to be appropriate for bringing the contents of the

notification to the attention of such persons as OFCOM consider appropriate.

     (7)    In this section—

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                    “numbering conditions” means—

                  (a)                 general conditions the making of which is authorised by section

55 or 56;

                  (b)                 conditions set under section 57;

                    “the relevant provisions”, in relation to the Plan or document, means the

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provisions of the Plan or document by reference to which (as they have

effect from time to time) the numbering conditions in question have

effect.

 59    Withdrawal of telephone number allocations

     (1)    Where OFCOM have allocated telephone numbers for the purposes of any

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numbering conditions, they may withdraw that allocation if, and only if, the

case is one in which the withdrawal of an allocation is authorised by this

section.

     (2)    The withdrawal of an allocation is authorised (subject to section 60) if—

           (a)           consent to the withdrawal is given by the person to whom the numbers

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are for the time being allocated;

           (b)           the withdrawal is made for the purposes of a transfer of the allocation

required by numbering conditions;

           (c)           the withdrawal is made for the purposes of a numbering reorganisation

applicable to a particular series of telephone numbers;

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           (d)           the withdrawal is made in circumstances specified in the numbering

conditions and for the purpose of securing that what appears to

OFCOM to be the best and most efficient use is made of the numbers

and other data that are appropriate for use as telephone numbers;

           (e)           the allocated numbers are numbers that have not been adopted during

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such period after their allocation as may be specified in the numbering

conditions; or

 

 

 
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