Date Released for FCC’s Conferencing Platform Accessibility Requirements


You may recall that AVIXA reported that the FCC plans to enforce accessibility requirements for conferencing platforms. Well, they have now set the deadline. And yes, video conferencing platforms like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Webex alike will all be subject to the new requirements.

Conferencing Tech Accessibility Requirements

Section 716 of the Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010 ("CVAA") requires Advanced Communications Services ("ACS"), which includes VoIP, email, text, and interoperable video conferencing services ("IVCS"), and related equipment, to be accessible to and usable by people with disabilities, unless doing so is not achievable.

ACS providers and manufacturers may comply with the FCC's accessibility requirements in two ways. One approach is to build accessibility features into services and equipment. The other option is to incorporate third-party accessibility solutions at a minimal cost to the user.

However, suppose a provider can't achieve accessibility through these means. In that case, it must make its products and services compatible with peripheral devices, software, hardware, or customer premises equipment available to the consumer at a nominal cost that individuals with disabilities can access.

In addition to ensuring that ACS is accessible, covered providers and manufacturers must also guarantee that their ACS products are usable by individuals with disabilities.

To be usable, individuals with disabilities must have access to the full functionality and documentation for the product, including:

  • Instructions,
  • product information (including accessible feature information),
  • billing documentation, and
  • technical support functionally equivalent to that provided to individuals without disabilities.

Among other things, support, information, and billing materials available online must be accessible to persons who are blind or visually impaired.

Covered providers must also create and maintain concurrent records of efforts taken, and certify compliance with this recordkeeping requirement to the FCC annually.

Essentially, by September 3, 2024, all online video conferencing services and related equipment must be made accessible to and usable by persons with hearing, speech, and vision-related disabilities, among others.


The FCC is also seeking comment on proposals in its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking ("NPRM"), including:

  • Specific performance objectives for improving the accessibility of video conferencing services, such as speech-to-text (captioning) capabilities, text-to-speech capabilities, and enabling the use of sign language interpreting
  • Whether additional performance objectives are needed
  • Rules for integration of Telecommunications Relay Services (TRS) with video conferencing without a dial-up telephone connection
  • When multiple communications assistants may be assigned to relay service calls that involve users of different forms of TRS.

Comments on the NPRM are due on September 6, 2023, with reply comments due October 6, 2023. Interested parties can make comments by accessing the Electronic Comment Filing System of the FCC’s website. People with disabilities who need assistance to file comments online can request assistance by emailing [email protected].

View the files for yourself here: CGB Announces Dates for Video Conferencing Proceeding | Federal Communications Commission (