FCC Access filings – how much notice is required.

FCC filing rules are summarized in https://www.fcc.gov/general/tariffs-0

The main points of interest are

Notice Periods

Tariffs are typically filed under a process that gives the public

  • 15 days’ notice on proposed price increases and changes in terms and conditions;
  •  7 days’ notice on proposed price reductions.

Any member of the public may file comments during the time allowed under the rules. Tariffs filed under this process are “deemed lawful,” meaning that if an investigation subsequent to the effective date shows that tariffs are unlawful, the carrier is only liable prospectively.


CLECs may file tariffs or offer service on a permissively detariffed basis , and in both cases, the rates and regulations are still subject to 201(b) and 202(a) of the Act. Switched access rates are subject to a benchmark rate requirement and the ICC rules. Additionally, Truth-in-Billing rule may apply.

The rules for CLECs were laid out in EIGHTH REPORT AND ORDER AND ORDER FCC-04-110

Of particular note is the definition of incumbent cited

The Commission’s rules define the “competing ILEC” as the local exchange carrier “that would provide interstate exchange access service to a particular end user if that end user were not served by the CLEC.”  47 C.F.R. § 61.26(a)(2). (our italics)

Rural exemption. a rural CLEC competing with a non-rural ILEC shall not file a tariff for its interstate exchange access services that prices those services above the rate prescribed in the NECA access tariff, assuming the highest rate band for local switching.

If a CLEC provides some portion of the interstate switched exchange access services used to send traffic to or from an end user not served by that CLEC, the rate for the access services provided may not exceed the rate charged by the competing ILEC for the same access services. – This clause sparked massive litigation


Author: Mike Hills

VP Vice President Research and Development CCMI Previously President i2Gemini

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