You can read all of our articles on our website. Having trouble getting our emails?   Change your spam controls and white list 

Maneuvering the 3G issue / More on liability for defective equipment design
March 3, 2021
Maneuvering the 3G issue
          There’s plenty of discussion regarding the sunset for 3G and what responsible dealers are supposed to do about it.  Here are a couple of legal and not so legal considerations.
          Obviously it’s your responsibility to let your subscribers know that their alarm systems will no longer be able to communicate signals to the central station.  This gives you the opportunity to communicate and interact with your subscribers, which should be a good thing.  Of course this particular message isn’t exactly good news, unless the spin is that the newer communication is going to be more reliable and work better [and that’s not my area of expertise]. 
          Alarm installers are dealing with the opportunity to converse with their subscribers in different ways.  Some are absorbing the cost of the upgrade; others require the subscriber to pay for the upgrade.  Before you give any thought to the marketing and public relations aspect of the issue you should understand what your obligation is to your subscribers with respect to the upgrade.  If you don’t have the Standard Form Agreements [updated from at least 5 years ago] then I am not certain what obligation you have to your subscriber.  You may have agreed to keep the monitoring service viable; it may be your obligation to swap out equipment to keep it functioning.
          If you do have the Standard Form Agreement than you will find a provision that relieves you of any responsibility for obsolete equipment, equipment no longer supported by the manufacturer, end of life equipment and, more on point, communication pathways that no longer work with the subscriber’s system.  In these cases it is the subscriber’s responsibility to pay for the upgrade and it would be a breach of the contract if the subscriber refused to do so; they would have to pay even if the system is not working.
          If your subscriber doesn’t want to pay for the upgrade be sure to write to the subscriber and warn that communication may be terminated. 
          The 3G upgrade presents great opportunity for you to upgrade a lot more than the communication device.  New equipment becomes available all the time and this is your opportunity to increase your RMR and offer additional equipment and services.
More on liability for defective equipment design
          I have been involved in two major product liability lawsuits on fire alarm over 50 years. In addition on a multistate arson homicide case I added compelling evidence for prosecution of multiple state official’s complisite with Insurance fraud claims and fatal arsonist fires.
          This is why NFPA has established certified testing procedures,  and documentation required on a yearly basis reviewable by insurance carriers and qualified state and federal officials.
Montgomery Ames

To order up to date Standard Form Alarm /  Security / Fire and related Agreementsclick here:
You can check out the program and sign up here: or contact our Program Coordinator Stacy Spector, Esq at 516 747 6700 x 304.
NOTICE:  You can always read our Articles on our website at
THE ALARM EXCHANGEalarm classifieds alarm security contracts

    This area is reserved for alarm classifieds, alarm company announcements, solicitations, offers, etc. 
    There is no charge to post a listing here.Include your contact information, phone, email and web site.  If you would like to submit a post, please send an email to  To create a reciprocal link to our website, click here.

Getting on our Email List / Email Articles archived: 
    Many of you are forwarding these emails to friends or asking that others be added to the list.  Sign up for our daily newsletter here: Sign Up.  You can read articles and order alarm contracts on our web site
Ken Kirschenbaum,Esq
Kirschenbaum & Kirschenbaum PC
Attorneys at Law
200 Garden City Plaza
Garden City, NY 11530
516 747 6700 x 301