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Frequently Asked Questions


» Who Administers Relay North Dakota?

The Telecommunications Access of North Dakota’s program was established by the 53rd. Legislative Assembly by the enactment of House Bill 1028 which established a program to provide specialized telecommunications services and equipment to the communications impaired.

In response to the Americans with Disabilities Act and the North Dakota legislative mandate, the relay services program is funded by an access line surcharge paid by the customers of local exchange companies and radio communications service providers from the State of North Dakota.

Information Technology Department of the State of North Dakota administers the relay services program. Before June 1 of each year, the Public Service Commission is required to calculate the amount of the surcharge based on cost data and other information provided to it by the Information Technology Department.

» As my Long Distance carrier is not Sprint, why was I billed by Sprint for making long distance calls through Relay North Dakota?

Relay North Dakota honors Relay North Dakota users’ requests to be billed through their long distance carriers. Relay North Dakota users will need to inform their Relay North Dakota Communication Assistants to bill their calls to a designated long distance carrier. If Relay North Dakota users do not inform their Relay North Dakota Communication Assistants, their long distance calls will be billed by Sprint as a default carrier.

For better convenience, Relay North Dakota users can create their Customer Database profiles and "lock" into their long distance carrier. This way, other long distance carriers will not bill Relay North Dakota users. To sign up your Customer Database profile, you can call Relay North Dakota Customer Service at 1-800-676-3777 (TTY/Voice).

» Why doesn't Relay North Dakota accept my new long distance carrier?

As there are many new long distance companies coming up every year, Relay North Dakota strives to have them on the Carrier of Choice listing. Major long distance carriers are on the listing. If your long distance carrier is not on the listing, please have your long distance carrier contact Roxy Ennen with Relay North Dakota at her telephone number, 701-328-2300.

» Attempting to call designated numbers through Relay North Dakota, they hung up on me. Why?

Aiming for transparency, Relay North Dakota allows Relay North Dakota users to have control of their calls. There are times when voice users who are not familiar with Relay North Dakota, hang up on those calls.

Relay North Dakota Communication Assistants make this announcement when they are connected with voice users, "Hello. Relay North Dakota Communication Assistant XXX. Have you received a relay call before?"

If the voice person says no, the Relay North Dakota Communication Assistant will explain the service, "The caller is typing their conversation which will be read to you. When you hear the words ‘Go Ahead’, speak directly to the caller. The operator will type everything that is heard. One moment for your call to begin."

Relay North Dakota users are free to request their Relay North Dakota Communication Assistants to waive the announcement and explanation. In this way, they can explain in their own words to the voice party. For instance, a TTY user can call through Relay North Dakota to a car salesperson, "HELLO THIS IS JOHN DOE CALLING TO BUY A CAR, CAN WE TALK MORE Q GA.

» Why should we have Customer Database profiles?

By collecting input from Relay North Dakota users, it was clear that there are specific preferences in each Relay North Dakota user. The Customer Database feature was developed to provide specific preferences and it allows them to "lock" into their long distance carrier, list up to ten frequently dialed numbers, choose their language type, and many more. In this way, it will help reduce the set-up time, saving time in placing your call through Relay North Dakota.

Customer Database profiles will work from residential lines. It will not work from restricted lines such as payphones, hotel phones and business (PBX) lines.

To receive a Users Guide on Customer Database, please call Relay North Dakota Customer Service at 1-800-676-3777 (TTY/Voice) to obtain a free copy.

» Why should I use Relay North Dakota? I can hear with my hearing aid and my amplified telephone.

Approximately 10% of Americans have hearing loss; they vary from minimal to profound hearing loss. Some are capable on using their telephones with assistance of their hearing aids and telephone amplifiers. Some are not able to hear enough to use their telephones; they use their Teletype (TTY) machines to type and read words over telephone lines.

There are some people who are hard of hearing, may have difficulties in comprehending words over their telephones with their hearing aids and amplified telephones. Normally, they may be reluctant on using TTY’s and Relay North Dakota. Eventually, they will find it much more convenient after a number of Relay North Dakota calls.

Voice Carry Over (VCO) is a popular feature among Relay North Dakota users as it allows them to speak directly to their hearing parties. To obtain more information about Relay North Dakota and Voice Carry Over (VCO), please call Relay North Dakota Customer Service at 1-800-676-3777 (TTY/Voice)

» Why can't Relay North Dakota pronounce my name?

Relay North Dakota ensures that your call is relayed properly, including your name. There are some names, towns and locations, which may be difficult to pronounce. Maintaining transparency, Relay North Dakota Communication Assistants will relay the voice party’s questions and allow you to make clarifications such as spelling your name.

There are times Relay North Dakota Communication Assistants have to type some new names, they will prompt the voice party for spelling clarifications.

It will help if TTY users can spell out abbreviations. Relay North Dakota Communication Assistants will wonder about this abbreviation, "SD". It may mean San Diego or South Dakota.

» Can I use my computer to communicate with a TTY user?

Communicating through a computer and a standard modem, it uses ASCII to send information through the telephone lines. Teletype (TTY) machines use Baudot Code, which is not compatible with ASCII.

There are some vendors, which sell specified modems that will convert Baudot Code into ASCII and vice versa for computer owners.

Computer users can use ASCII to Relay North Dakota, it has a higher speed level, 300, 1200 and 2400 baud. They can call Relay North Dakota at this number, 1-800-735-2942 (ASCII).

» Are our conversations kept confidential?

Yes, all calls made through Relay North Dakota are kept confidential! No records are kept as the conversations are automatically erased from the computers after the end of the calls. Relay North Dakota Communication Assistants agree to adhere to the confidentiality requirements by signing the code of ethics agreement.

Relay North Dakota users can communicate directly to the other party, as Relay North Dakota Communication Assistants are transparent, working like "human live wires".

If you have additional questions, contact Sprint TRS Customer Service at 1-800-676-3777.


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