The Regulatory Mix, TMI’s daily blog of regulatory activities, is a snapshot of PUC, FCC, legislative, and occasionally court issues that our regulatory monitoring team uncovers each day. Depending on their significance, some items may be the subject of a TMI Regulatory Bulletin.
Open Internet Order
The United States Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit was chosen to hear the appeals of the FCC’s Net Neutrality/Open Internet Order. This is the same court that overturned the FCC’s 2010 Open Internet rules. Two parties have already filed for review of the Order. Since the petitions were filed in two different circuit courts of appeals, the US Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation selected the court that will hear the appeal by lottery. See our 2/27/15 Blog FCC Adopts Net Neutrality Rules. TMI Regulatory Bulletin Service subscribers see Bulletins dated 3/20/15.
Notice of Apparent Liability
The FCC issued a Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture to Roman LD, Inc., an Irving, Texas telephone company, in the amount of $5.9M for allegedly switching consumers’ long distance telephone services without their authorization (slamming), misrepresenting the company’s identity during telemarketing calls, fabricating “authorization” recordings as proof of consumers’ authorizations, and transferring control of the company without FCC approval. The FCC’s Enforcement Bureau reviewed over 100 complaints filed by consumers against Roman. The complaints were filed with the FCC, the Better Business Bureau, state regulatory agencies, and directly with Roman. The proposed fine breaks down as follows:
- $3,200,000 for the unauthorized carrier changes (the base forfeiture amount of $40,000 for each of the 80 slamming violations at issue);
- $1,120,000 for deceptive marketing ($80,000 for each of the 14 instances in which Roman misrepresented its identity or fabricated an authorization recording);
- $1,560,000 because the violations were egregious. The FCC noted that some of the principals of Roman were also principals of Silv Communications and United Telecom, Inc., toll resellers that the FCC previously investigated for similar slamming violations and deceptive marketing, and thus the company “was on actual notice that such conduct likely violated the Act and our rules.”
- $20,000 for two unauthorized substantial transfers of control (domestic and international authority).
NEW Workshop! We have dates for a 2nd Workshop this spring! Dates for Spring 2 are May 18 & 19, 2015!