Making a false distress call (mayday, SOS, etc.) in the United States
is a federal offense, carrying a sentence of up to six years of prison and/or a fine
of up to $250,000. The accused may also be required to make restitution to the US Coast
Guard and other agencies that incurred expenses during search and rescue operations.
§ 97.113(b) :
Amber Alerts over amateur radio not allowed if other broadcast means are available.
The FCC requires all equipment capable of RF radiation to be certified
if they are for sale :
FCC equipment authorization
Georgia code on hands-free devices
(40-6-241, ham radio section highlighted)
When you submit a list of call signs to the FCC to apply for a vanity call sign, the
FCC (877-480-3201) will make their selection in this fashion:
The FCC will consider a person's list of requested vanity call signs in the order listed on the 25-entry form (the person will be granted entry #1 if everything qualifies, or consider #2 if something disqualifies it.)
If more than one person requests a particular vanity call sign, the person who requested it first (by date; time-of-day is disregarded) will be considered first.
If more than one person requests a particular vanity call sign on the same date, all qualified applicants will be considered, and the selection is made at random.
Even though communicating with an unlicensed person on an amateur frequency is technically
not legal, it is not only permitted, but good, to communicate with the person just long
enough to inform the person of the error, how to remedy the error (get off the air and
get licensed), and to invite the person to a club meeting, etc. — Steve Ewald,
WV1X, ARRL Field and Regulatory Correspondent (860-594-0265), 13 Nov 2017
You can obtain the call sign of a
close relative immediately
FCC rules on the same
To get your former, unclaimed call sign back,
you don't need to hold the same license class as the one you lost,
if you allowed it to expire. For example, if you earned an Advanced class license in 1985,
with a 2X2 call sign, and it expired in 1995, and the grace period ran out in 1997, and pass
the Technician class license exam (Element 2) today, you will be granted a General class
license, but can request your former 2X2 call sign if it has not been taken by another.
Can a convicted felon become a ham radio operator?
The FCC will not process new or upgrade or renewal applications
during the partial government shutdown, but a person can still obtain an FRN
(email from Maria Somma of ARRL to Steve Whitehead, 01-11-2019)
If you request a name change, even for a spelling correction, your application will be marked with special
condition code 4020, meaning that the change request is granted, provided the license is not being
transferred to another person