FCC Will Open Rulemaking Seeking to Eliminate Access Arbitrage


Yesterday, the FCC released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that seeks to eliminate “access arbitrage” in the intercarrier compensation regime.  The NPRM will be voted on at the FCC’s June 7, 2018 Open Meeting.

Among other things, the NPRM seeks comment on proposed rules to give access-stimulating LECs two choices about how they connect to IXCs, either:

  1. be financially responsible for calls delivered to their networks so they, rather than IXCs, pay for the delivery of calls to their end office or the functional equivalent; or
  2. accept direct connections either from the IXC or an intermediate access provider of the IXC’s choice, allowing IXCs to bypass intermediate access providers selected by the access-stimulating LEC.

In the alternative, the FCC seeks comment on moving all traffic bound for an access-stimulating LEC to bill-and-keep.

Comments are due 21 days after the NPRM is published in the Federal Register; reply comments will be due 35 days after FedReg publication.

If you require counsel on access charge matters, generally, or wish to participate in or track developments in the proceeding, please contact Michael P. Donahue at mpd@commlawgroup.com.

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