Preparing for the Transition to 988 Suicide Prevention Lifeline

The Federal Communications Commission (“FCC” or “Commission”) established 988 as the new nationwide phone number to connect Americans in crisis to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (“NSPL”). The rules require that all phone providers direct all 988 calls to the NSPL by July 16, 2022. This requires that all providers implement 10-digit dialing in areas that use 7-digit dialing and have a 988 NXX code as the first three numbers in 7-digit phone numbers.

Transition Timeline:

Beginning April 24, 2021, customers should begin dialing 10 digits (area code + telephone number) for all local non-mobile calls. If customers forget and dial just 7 digits, the call will still be completed.
Beginning October 24, 2021, customers must dial 10-digits (area code + telephone number) for all local calls. On and after this date, local calls dialed with only 7-digits may not be completed, and a recording will inform customers that the call cannot be completed as dialed. Customers must hang up and dial again using the area code and the 7-digit number.
Beginning July 16, 2022, dialing “988” will route calls to the NSPL.

If you have any questions or require assistance with implementing access to the NSPL or 10-digit dialing, please email Dee Herman at dee@hermanwhiteaker.com, Carrie DeVier at cdevier@hermanwhiteaker.com or Hilary Rosenthal at hrosenthal@hermanwhiteaker.com.