Know Before You Go

Understand Prorated Charges

What is prorated billing?
Prorated billing is a way to calculate standard, or "fair," billing amounts when they occur across a non-standard billing period. For example, your U.S. Cellular service is billed monthly, so if you start or stop service mid-month, your charges for that month are prorated, meaning that they are based only on the days that month on which you had service.

How is proration calculated?
  • Your usual full monthly charge is divided by 30 (or 31) days to determine a daily rate.
  • The daily rate is multiplied by the number of days in that billing period on which you had service.
  • The result is your prorated charge, also known as your partial month charge

Which types of charges or credits may be prorated?

All monthly charges including your monthly plan rate, group-level charges, subscription charges, charges for Device Protection+ and data package charges. Note that installment charges are typically not subject to proration.

When do proration charges typically occur?

Proration charges occur whenever you start or stop service in the middle of a billing period, such as on your first bill, when you make a change to your plan, or if your service is suspended or resumed. Your bill may even show more than one prorated charge/credit if service was stopped and started again within the same billing cycle or if you have multiple lines of service.

Click the examples below to see sample bills that show proration with detailed explanations.

 
First Bill
Plan Change
Service Suspension
Service Resumed
Service Suspended and Resumed


Proration Billing on Your First Bill

When you begin your U.S. Cellular® service, you are billed a month in advance. This means that your first bill will include your first full monthly charge along with the prorated (or partial) charges/credits for the last billing month.

This example of a first bill details both a prorated charge and prorated credits.

Example: First Bill

(A) a monthly charge for the service plan a full month in advance

(B) a prorated charge for 3 days of your service plan in the last billing period

(C) a credit for a full month of unlimited data

(D) a prorated credit for unlimited data during the last billing period

(E) a credit (discount) for enrolling in Auto Pay/Paperless Billing

(F) a prorated credit for enrollment in Auto Pay/Paperless Billing for the last billing period

 

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Proration Billing For a Service Plan Change

If you make a change to your plan, such as switching plans, your next bill will reflect a proration charge/credit similar to those shown below.

Example: First Bill After Plan Change

(A) a full month's charge for the new plan

(B) a prorated credit for the unused portion of your previous plan from the last billing cycle

(C) a prorated charge for the new plan/features from the last billing cycle

 

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Proration Billing When Service Is Suspended

If your account or line experiences a service suspension, your bill will show a prorated credit for monthly charges from the last billing cycle. Monthly charges may appear in the Account Number Summary section on page 3 and/or in the Cellular Telephone Number Summary section for each service line.

Example: Bill After Service Suspension

When service is suspended, your bill will show:

(A) monthly charges for the next billing period (if service suspension occurs when the bill is created, this will be zero)

(B) partial monthly charges will be zero

(C) a prorated credit (adjustment) for the unused portion of the monthly charges from the last billing cycle

If you have promotional discounts, your bill will show:

(D) a charge to offset the adjustment during the time the line was suspended

(E) a credit for the discount in the next billing period

 

Note: Any installment payments will continue to be billed as usual

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Proration Billing When Service Resumes After a Suspension

If your service is restored after a suspension, your next bill will show prorated monthly charges from the prior billing period, along with the usual charges for the current billing period. Monthly charges may appear in the Account Number Summary section on page 3 and/or in the Cellular Telephone Number Summary section for each service line.

Example: Bill After Service is Resumed

When service is suspended, your bill will show:

(A) The usual monthly plan charge

(B) prorated charges for the last billing period, beginning the day service was restored

(C) adjustments for the last billing period will be zero

If you have promotional discounts, your bill will show:

(D) a promotional credit for the prorated monthly charges

(E) a credit for the promotion in the next billing period

(F) zero on this line, unless there has been a plan change

 

Note: Any installment payments will continue to be billed as usual

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Proration Billing When Service is Suspended and Resumed in the Same Billing Period

If your account was suspended and restored in the last billing period, your bill will include both the prorated credits from the suspension period and the prorated charges from after it was restored. Your bill will also include your standard full monthly charge for the current billing period along with any late fees and service restoration fees, if applicable.

Example: Bill After Service is Suspended Then Resumed

If service was suspended and resumed during the same billing cycle, your bill will show:

(A) monthly charges for the next billing period

(B) suspension date with zero charges

(C) prorated charges for the last billing period—beginning the day service resumed

(D) a prorated credit (adjustment) for the unused portion of the monthly charges from the last billing period

(E) a late payment charge if suspension was due to late payment

Example: Bill After Service is Suspended Then Resumed

If there are monthly charges at the line level, they may be:

(F) monthly charges for the next billing period

(G) suspension date with zero charges

(H) prorated charges for the last billing period—beginning the day service resumed

(I) a prorated credit (adjustment) for the unused portion of the monthly charges from the last billing period

(J) a service restoration charge of $25/line if suspension was due to late payment


Note: Any installment payment charges are not affected by a suspend/resume and will be charged as usual

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