The change to 10-digit dialing for local calls was ordered by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) as preparation for a move to designate 988 as the national three-digit suicide and mental health crisis hotline. The dialing shortcut takes effect nationwide on July 16, 2022.
Beginning October 24, 2021, local calls dialed with only seven digits will reach a recording that the call cannot be completed as dialed. Callers must hang up and dial again using 1 + area code + telephone number.
There are 82 area codes nationwide affected by the 10-digit dialing rule. In California, they include the 209, 530, 562, 626, 650, 707, 925, 949 and 951 area codes.
During the transition to 988, people who need help should continue to contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline by calling 1-800-273-8255 (1-800-273-TALK) and through online chats. Veterans and Service members may reach the Veterans Crisis Line by pressing 1 after dialing, chatting online at www.veteranscrisisline.net, or texting 838255.