Telecommunications Alert: State Regulatory Commissions Affirm Interconnection Rights for Cable-Owned CLECs Providing VoIP Services

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Recent decisions by public service commissions in New Hampshire and Vermont, and by a Michigan administrative law judge, affirm that competitive local exchange carriers (CLECs) furnishing voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) providers access to the public switched telephone network are “telecommunications carriers” entitled to interconnection rights with incumbent local exchange carriers (ILECs).

Section 251 of the Communications Act establishes a duty for all telecommunications carriers to interconnect with other telecommunications carriers. In several states, rural ILECs have gone before state regulatory commissions to challenge the right of cable-owned CLECs carrying a substantial volume of VoIP traffic to operate in the ILEC’s service area or to obtain interconnection with ILEC networks. In each of the decisions briefly reviewed below, the state commission held in favor of allowing the cable CLEC to compete with and obtain interconnection from the ILEC.

Please see full alert for more information.

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Mintz Levin on:

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