Are Your Company’s Consumer Electronics Products Exempt from FCC Marketing Regulations?


Consumer electronics are integral parts of the Internet of Things (“IoT”).  Manufacturers are designing and marketing consumer electronic devices that can perform functions that were unheard of only a year or so ago. The exponential growth of IoT is, in part, the result of manufacturers adding wireless modules into all manner of products, which subjects those products to federal radiofrequency (“RF”) equipment rules.  With the exception of certain RF equipment categories, virtually all types of consumer electronics that are manufactured, imported, and/or marketed in the U.S. – whether IoT devices or not – are subject to stringent authorization and marketing regulations.  Suppliers that violate those regulations are subject to stiff fines by the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”).   The FCC can also order suppliers to remove their non-compliance devices from the market.

IoT Attorney Ronald E. Quirk, Jr., has published an article, “Are your Company’s Consumer Electronics Exempt from FCC Marketing Regulations?” in the April 2017 issue of IEEE Consumer Electronicsmagazine.  This article delineates the FCC’s authorization and marketing rules for RF devices, and informs the reader as to which types of RF devices are typically exempt from those rules.  Consumer electronics suppliers are urged to read this article, as FCC exemption can save substantial time and money in designing and marketing your products.

IEEE Consumer Electronics has restricted access to this article via a paywall.  If you would like to read this article free of charge, please contact Mr. Quirk, who will send you a copy upon request.

IoT Attorney Ronald E. Quirk, is head of the Internet of Things & Connected Devices Practice Group  at Marashlian & Donahue PLLC, The CommLaw Group, where he focuses his practice on the serving the comprehensive needs of the burgeoning and complex Internet of Things industry, including: contracts and commercial law, privacy & cybersecurity, spectrum access, equipment authorization, tax, regulatory compliance planning, and more.  His career has spanned more than 20 years, including several years at AMLAW 100 firms and the FCC.  He can be reached at or (703) 714-1305.

ATTORNEY ADVERTISING DISCLAIMER: This information may be considered advertising in some jurisdictions under the applicable law and ethical rules. The determination of the need for legal services and the choice of a lawyer are extremely important decisions and should not be based solely upon advertisements or self-proclaimed expertise. No representation is made that the quality of the legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers

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