§ 2.962Requirements for Telecommunication Certification Bodies.
(a) Telecommunication certification bodies (TCBs) designated by the Commission, or designated by another authority pursuant to an effective bilateral or multilateral mutual recognition agreement or arrangement to which the United States is a party, shall comply with the following requirements.
(1) The certification system shall be based on type testing as identified in sub-clause 1.2(a) of ISO/IEC Guide 65.
(2) Certification shall normally be based on testing no more than one unmodified representative sample of each product type for which certification is sought. Additional samples may be requested if clearly warranted, such as when certain tests are likely to render a sample inoperative.
(c)Criteria for Designation.
(1) To be designated as a TCB under this section, an entity shall, by means of accreditation, meet all the appropriate specifications in ISO/IEC Guide 65 for the scope of equipment it will certify. The accreditation shall specify the group of equipment to be certified and the applicable regulations for product evaluation.
(2) The TCB shall demonstrate expert knowledge of the regulations for each product with respect to which the body seeks designation. Such expertise shall include familiarity with all applicable technical regulations, administrative provisions or requirements, as well as the policies and procedures used in the application thereof.
(3) The TCB shall have the technical expertise and capability to test the equipment it will certify and shall also be accredited in accordance with ISO/IEC Standard 17025 to demonstrate it is competent to perform such tests.
(4) The TCB shall demonstrate an ability to recognize situations where interpretations of the regulations or test procedures may be necessary. The appropriate key certification and laboratory personnel shall demonstrate a knowledge of how to obtain current and correct technical regulation interpretations. The competence of the Telecommunication Certification Body shall be demonstrated by assessment. The general competence, efficiency, experience, familiarity with technical regulations and products included in those technical regulations, as well as compliance with applicable parts of the ISO/IEC Standard 17025 and Guide 65, shall be taken into consideration.
(5) A TCB shall participate in any consultative activities, identified by the Commission or NIST, to facilitate a common understanding and interpretation of applicable regulations.
(6) The Commission will provide public notice of the specific methods that will be used to accredit TCBs, consistent with these qualification criteria.
(7) A TCB shall be reassessed for continued accreditation on intervals not exceeding two years.
(1) In accordance with the provisions of sub-clause 4.4 of ISO/IEC Guide 65, the testing of a product, or a portion thereof, may be performed by a sub-contractor of a designated TCB, provided the laboratory has been assessed by the TCB as competent and in compliance with the applicable provisions of ISO/IEC Guide 65 and other relevant standards and guides.
(2) When a subcontractor is used, the TCB shall be responsible for the test results and shall maintain appropriate oversight of the subcontractor to ensure reliability of the test results. Such oversight shall include periodic audits of products that have been tested.
(e)Designation of a TCB.
(1) The Commission will designate as a TCB any organization that meets the qualification criteria and is accredited by NIST or its recognized accreditor.
(2) The Commission will withdraw the designation of a TCB if the TCB's accreditation by NIST or its recognized accreditor is withdrawn, if the Commission determines there is just cause for withdrawing the designation, or if the TCB requests that it no longer hold the designation. The Commission will provide a TCB with 30 days notice of its intention to withdraw the designation and provide the TCB with an opportunity to respond.
(3) A list of designated TCBs will be published by the Commission.
(f)Scope of responsibility.
(1) A TCB shall certify equipment in accordance with the Commission's rules and policies.
(2) A TCB shall accept test data from any source, subject to the requirements in ISO/IEC Guide 65, and shall not unnecessarily repeat tests.
(3) A TCB may establish and assess fees for processing certification applications and other tasks as required by the Commission.
(4) A TCB may rescind a grant of certification within 30 days of grant for administrative errors. After that time, a grant can only be revoked by the Commission through the procedures in § 2.939 of this part. A TCB shall notify both the applicant and the Commission when a grant is rescinded.
(5) A TCB may not:
(i) Grant a waiver of the rules, or certify equipment for which the Commission rules or requirements do not exist or for which the application of the rules or requirements is unclear.
(ii) Take enforcement actions; or
(iii) Authorize a transfer of control of a grantee.
(6) All TCB actions are subject to Commission review.
(1) A TCB shall supply an electronic copy of each approved application form and grant of certification to the Commission.
(2) In accordance with ISO/IEC Guide 65, a TCB is required to conduct appropriate post-market surveillance activities. These activities shall be based on type testing a few samples of the total number of product types which the certification body has certified. Other types of surveillance activities of a product that has been certified are permitted, provided they are no more onerous than testing type. The Commission may at any time request a list of products certified by the certification body and may request and receive copies of product evaluation reports. The Commission may also request that a TCB perform post-market surveillance, under Commission guidelines, of a specific product it has certified.
(3) If during post market surveillance of a certified product, a TCB determines that a product fails to comply with the applicable technical regulations, the Telecommunication Certification Body shall immediately notify the grantee and the Commission. A follow-up report shall also be provided within thirty days of the action taken by the grantee to correct the situation.
(4) Where concerns arise, the TCB shall provide a copy of the application file to the Commission within 30 calendar days of a request for the file made by the Commission to the TCB and the manufacturer. Where appropriate, the file should be accompanied by a request for confidentiality for any material that may qualify for confidential treatment under the Commission's Rules. If the application file is not provided within 30 calendar days, a statement shall be provided to the Commission as to why it cannot be provided.
(h) In case of a dispute with respect to designation or recognition of a TCB and the testing or certification of products by a TCB, the Commission will be the final arbiter. Manufacturers and designated TCBs will be afforded at least 30 days to comment before a decision is reached. In the case of a TCB designated or recognized, or a product certified pursuant to an effective bilateral or multilateral mutual recognition agreement or arrangement (MRA) to which the United States is a party, the Commission may limit or withdraw its recognition of a TCB designated by an MRA party and revoke the certification of products using testing or certification provided by such a TCB. The Commission shall consult with the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR), as necessary, concerning any disputes arising under an MRA for compliance with the Telecommunications Trade Act of 1988 (Section 1371-1382 of the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988).