Businesses Need to Comply with New 911 Law or Face Risks
The deadline to comply with Kari’s Law was February 16, 2020. Here’s an overview of what employers, businesses, and the hospitality industry need to know.
What Caused this Change?
Signed into law last year, Kari’s Law is one of two laws aimed at improving the 911 service. The law is named after Kari Hunt Dunn. Ms. Dunn was attacked and killed by her estranged husband in a hotel room. Dunn’s 9-year-old daughter tried to call 911 from the room, but the hotel required guests to dial 9 before placing an outside call. Consequently, the call never got through to a 911 operator and dispatcher.
Who Must Comply?
Kari’s Law applies to businesses who use multi-line telephone systems (“MLTS”). Businesses who utilize MLTS “manufactured, imported, offered for first sale or lease, first sold or leased, or installed after February 16, 2020, must comply with the law.
What is required?
- All calls to 911 must be directly routed to 911 without interruption or the need for a prefix.
- Businesses must implement alerts to designated personnel when a 911 call has been made within the organization. These notifications, which can take the form of SMS/text messages, email or conspicuous onscreen messages, must allow for designated personnel to escort first responders to the caller.
Failure to properly implement Kari’s law creates a high potential of risks for employers. A company found to be in “knowing and willful” non-compliance with Kari’s Law may face a fine up to $10,000 in addition to other penalties, which include a fine of $500 for each day they are found non-compliant.
About the Author: Alejandro Pérez is a partner at Jaburg Wilk. Fully bilingual, Alejandro assists employers of all sizes with labor and employment law issues. In addition to representing clients in litigation, Alejandro provides advice and counsel on HR decisions; conducts sensitive workplace investigations; drafts and reviews employment policies, handbooks, and agreements; and trains workforces on a variety of aspects of employment law.