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                                   Before the

                       Federal Communications Commission

                             Washington, D.C. 20554


                                            )                          
                                                                       
                                            )                          
                                                                       
                                            )                          
                                                                       
     In the Matter of                       )                          
                                                                       
     All American Telephone Co.,            )                          
                                                                       
     e-Pinnacle Communications, Inc., and   )                          
                                                                       
     ChaseCom,                              )                          
                                                File No. EB-10-MD-003  
     Complainants,                          )                          
                                                                       
     v.                                     )                          
                                                                       
     AT&T Corp.,                            )                          
                                                                       
     Defendant.                             )                          
                                                                       
                                            )                          
                                                                       
                                            )                          
                                                                       
                                            )                          


                          Memorandum opinion and order

   Adopted: January 20, 2011 Released: January 20, 2011

   By the Commission:

   I. introduction

    1. This Memorandum Opinion and Order denies a formal complaint that All
       American Telephone Co., e-Pinnacle Communications, Inc., and ChaseCom
       (collectively, the "CLECs") filed against AT&T Corp. ("AT&T") under
       section 208 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended (the "Act").
       The Complaint effectuates a primary jurisdiction referral from the
       United States District Court for the Southern District of New York
       (the "Court") in connection with litigation pending before the Court.
       Specifically, the Complaint raises the following issues: whether AT&T
       violated section 201(b), section 203(c), or any other section of the
       Act, (1) by failing to pay tariffed terminating access charges billed
       by the CLECs and (2) by not filing a "rate complaint" with the
       Commission if AT&T believed the CLECs' charges were unlawful.

    2. We find that neither AT&T's failure to pay the CLECs' charges nor its
       failure to file a "rate complaint" with the Commission violated any
       provision of the Act. As explained below, an allegation by a carrier
       that a customer has failed to pay charges specified in the carrier's
       tariff fails to state a claim for violation of any provision of the
       Act, including sections 201(b) and 203(c). This is true even if the
       customer is itself a carrier. Accordingly, we deny Counts I, II, and
       III of the Complaint.

   II. background

         A. The Parties and the CLECs' Invoices

    3. All American Telephone Co., Inc. ("All American"), e-Pinnacle
       Communications, Inc. ("e-Pinnacle") and ChaseCom were, at all relevant
       times, certificated to provide telecommunications service in specified
       parts of Utah and/or Nevada. AT&T provides interexchange service (and
       thus is an "IXC") - also known as long-distance service - throughout
       the United States.

    4. The CLECs have federal tariffs that provide for, inter alia,
       terminating access service. The CLECs sent bills to AT&T that
       indicated they were for the provision of terminating access service
       pursuant to the CLECs' tariffs. The CLECs' bills totaled approximately
       $11 million, plus late payment penalties of approximately $3.5
       million. All of the calls for which the CLECs billed AT&T were to
       telephone numbers associated with chat line and conferencing service
       providers. The CLECs did not market or offer local exchange services
       to residents or other businesses. Suspecting that the CLECs were
       participating in "access stimulation" outside the contours of their
       tariffs, AT&T refused to pay the bills, except for a few invoices
       (totaling approximately $250,000) that AT&T alleges it paid by
       mistake. As to those payments, AT&T requested a refund from the CLECs.
       The CLECs have not issued any refunds.

     A. The Federal Court Litigation and Referral to the FCC

    5. On February 5, 2007, the CLECs sued AT&T in the United States District
       Court for the Southern District of New York. The federal court
       complaint, as amended on March 6, 2007, asserted four claims: (i) a
       collection action for amounts allegedly owed for access services
       provided pursuant to interstate tariffs; (ii) a claim that AT&T
       violated 47 U.S.C. S: 201(b) by invoking "self-help" and failing to
       pay for the tariffed access services; (iii) a claim that AT&T violated
       47 U.S.C. S: 203(c) by failing to pay for the tariffed services; and
       (iv) a claim for compensation under quantum meruit for the
       telecommunications services allegedly provided. AT&T filed an answer
       and counterclaims, asserting federal law claims that the CLECs
       violated sections 201(b) and 203 of the Act, and state law fraud,
       civil conspiracy, and unjust enrichment claims. Specifically, AT&T
       alleged that the CLECs did not provide switched access services
       consistent with the terms of their tariffs. AT&T also claimed that,
       regardless of whether the CLECs provided access services pursuant to
       tariff, they committed unreasonable practices through "sham"
       arrangements designed for the purpose of inflating access charges.

    6. On February 5, 2010, the Court referred the following issues, among
       others, to this Commission under the primary jurisdiction doctrine:

   (i) Did AT&T violate S: 201(b), S: 203(c), or any other provision of the
   Communications Act by refusing to pay the billed charges for the calls at
   issue?

   (ii) Did AT&T violate any provision of the Communications Act by refusing
   to pay the billed charges for the calls at issue and not filing a rate
   complaint with the FCC?

   On April 2, 2010, the Commission determined, by way of letter ruling, that
   the CLECs should file a formal complaint addressing these issues.

    7. On May 7, 2010, the CLECs filed their Complaint against AT&T. The
       Complaint alleges that AT&T has engaged in "unlawful self-help" in
       violation of sections 201(b) (Count I) and 203(c) of the Act (Count
       II) by refusing to pay the CLECs' charges for use of their local
       network services to complete long distance calls. The Complaint
       further alleges that AT&T violated section 201(b) of the Act (Count
       III) by failing to bring a "rate complaint" against the CLECs if AT&T
       believed their access charges were unlawful and instead refusing to
       pay the charges.

    8. AT&T timely filed an Answer to the Complaint on June 14, 2010, and All
       American filed its Reply on July 6, 2010. The parties submitted Joint
       Statements on July 16, 2010. At a July 26, 2010, status conference,
       Commission staff determined that, in light of the parties'
       submissions, there is no dispute over relevant material facts and,
       accordingly, no need for discovery or briefing in the case.

   III. Discussion

    9. For the following reasons, the answer to both of the Court's questions
       addressed in this Order is "no." AT&T did not violate sections 201(b),
       203(c), or any other provision of the Communications Act by refusing
       to pay the billed charges for the calls at issue, regardless of
       whether it filed a rate complaint with the FCC. Accordingly, the
       CLECs' claims are denied.

   10. Under section 208 of the Act, the Commission has authority to
       adjudicate only claims alleging that a carrier has somehow violated
       the Act itself. During the past twenty years, the Commission has
       repeatedly held that an allegation by a carrier that a customer has
       failed to pay charges specified in the carrier's tariff fails to state
       a claim for violation of any provision of the Act, including sections
       201(b) and 203(c) - even if the carrier's customer is another carrier.
       These holdings stem from the fact that the Act generally governs a
       carrier's obligations to its customers, and not vice versa. Thus,
       although a customer-carrier's failure to pay another carrier's
       tariffed charges may give rise to a claim in court for breach of
       tariff/contract, it does not give rise to a claim at the Commission
       under section 208 (or in court under section 206) for breach of the
       Act itself. This long-standing Commission precedent that "collection
       actions" fail to state a claim for violation of the Act has been
       acknowledged and followed by courts.

   11. Applying the foregoing precedent to the instant case, the CLECs'
       claims that AT&T violated the Act must be denied. Each of the CLECs'
       three claims hinges on the contention that either section 201(b) or
       section 203(c) of the Act requires AT&T to pay the CLECs' tariffed
       access charges. In other words, each of the claims is exactly the kind
       of "collection action" that the Commission has repeatedly held fails
       to state a claim for violation of the Act.

   12. The CLECs acknowledge the existence of the Collection Action Orders:
       "[T]he CLECs know that they cannot file a collection action as a
       section 208 Formal Complaint - that is why they filed their collection
       actions with the SDNY court." They argue, however, that the Complaint
       is not really a collection action, because the Court rather than the
       Commission will ascertain and award any damages owed. This is a
       distinction without a difference. By focusing on whether this case is
       a "collection action," the CLECs fail to recognize that the reason the
       Commission does not hear collection actions is that a failure to pay
       tariffed access charges does not constitute a violation of the Act.
       Accordingly, the CLECs have no claim in a court or at the Commission
       that AT&T violated the Act in its role as a customer.

   13. According to the CLECs, several Commission orders state that under the
       Act, declining to pay charges allegedly accrued under a tariff without
       first challenging the tariffed rate via a section 208 complaint is a
       form of "self-help" in which a carrier never can engage. We do not
       endorse such withholding of payment outside the context of any
       applicable tariffed dispute resolution provisions. Nonetheless, the
       Commission has never held that a failure to pay tariffed charges
       violates the Act itself.

   14. Other "self-help" cases cited by the CLECs also are inapposite, for
       the same reasons. In fact, one of those cases is actually a Collection
       Action Order, and it explains why the Commission denies claims seeking
       payment of tariffed charges:

   [T]his statutory scheme [e.g., section 208 of the Act] does not constitute
   the Commission as collection agent for carriers with respect to unpaid
   tariffed charges. In the normal situation, if a carrier has failed to pay
   the lawful charges for services or facilities obtained from another
   carrier, the recourse of the unpaid carrier is an action in contract to
   compel payment, or a termination or disconnection of service until those
   charges have been paid.

   Thus, the "self-help" orders on which the CLECs rely do not undermine the
   Collection Action Orders or otherwise support the CLECs' assertion that
   AT&T's failure to pay their access charges and not file a "rate complaint"
   constitutes a violation of section 201(b) or 203(c) actionable under the
   Communications Act.

   15. The CLECs further rely on the Commission's 2001 CLEC Access Charge
       Reform Order, pointing out that the Commission expressed concern about
       interexchange carriers failing to pay CLEC access charges that they
       believed to be unreasonable. It is true that, as a small part of that
       Order's description of background information, the Commission stated
       that such failures to pay were "problematic." But nowhere did the
       Commission hold that such failures to pay were violations of the Act.
       To the contrary, the Commission essentially reiterated what the
       Collection Action Orders hold - that failures to pay may constitute
       breaches of tariff actionable in court, but not breaches of the Act:
       "[A]n IXC that refused payment of tariffed rates within the safe
       harbor would be subject to suit on the tariff in the appropriate
       federal district court...." Buttressing that statement, the Commission
       also observed that "our tariff rules were historically intended to
       protect purchasers of service from monopoly providers, not to protect
       sellers from monopsony purchasing power." Indeed, it is ironic that
       the CLECs rely on the 2001 Access Charge Reform Order, given that the
       Order's focus was "to eliminate regulatory arbitrage opportunities
       that previously have existed with respect to tariffed CLEC access
       charges." Thus, the 2001 CLEC Access Charge Reform Order does not
       support the CLECs' claims here.

   16. The CLECs also rely on several Commission orders and a court opinion
       holding that a carrier's failure to pay per-call compensation to
       payphone service providers in accordance with the Commission's
       payphone compensation rules constitutes a violation of section 201(b)
       of the Act. In the CLECs' view, if a carrier's failure to pay per-call
       compensation to payphone service providers is a violation of section
       201(b), then surely a carrier's failure to pay access charges is such
       a violation, as well.

   17. The Commission has already explained why the payphone analogy raised
       by the CLECs fails. The Act requires the Commission to adopt rules
       ensuring that payphone service providers receive compensation for
       every completed call originated from their payphones. To implement
       that statutory directive, the Commission adopted rules requiring
       certain carriers to pay to originating payphone service providers a
       fixed amount for each completed payphone call handled by those
       carriers. In subsequent decisions, the Commission held that a
       carrier's failure to pay the amount required to be paid by the
       Commission's payphone compensation rules constitutes a violation of
       our payment rules and a violation of section 201(b) of the Act.

   18. By stark contrast, the provisions of the Act and our rules regarding
       access charges apply only to the provider of the service, not to the
       customer; and they govern only what the provider may charge, not what
       the customer must pay. Thus, failure to pay does not breach any
       provisions of the Act or Commission rules.

   19. In addition, the CLECs cite Qwest v. Farmers  (and cases cited
       therein), which, according to the CLECs, holds that a carrier is
       always entitled to at least some compensation for a service rendered,
       even if the service is not specified in its tariff. The CLECs reason
       that, if a carrier is always entitled to some compensation for a
       service rendered, then AT&T's failure to pay any compensation for the
       CLECs' termination of AT&T's traffic must violate the Act. The CLECs'
       reasoning fails. Qwest v. Farmers does not hold that a carrier is
       always entitled to some compensation for a service rendered, even if
       the service is not specified in its tariff. Qwest v. Farmers merely
       holds that a carrier may be entitled to some compensation for
       providing a non-tariffed service, depending on the totality of the
       circumstances.

   20. In the end, the CLECs can point to only one Commission decision
       arguably holding that a carrier-customer's failure to pay access
       charges can constitute a violation of section 201(b) of the Act - MGC
       v. AT&T. Almost ten years ago, however, at least one federal district
       court had already noted that the Commission "ha[d] questioned the
       continuing validity and scope of the MGC decision." And during those
       ten years, the Commission has re-affirmed the Collection Action Orders
       at least six times, and noted the incongruity of MGC v. AT&T at least
       twice. Indeed, the only question discussed extensively in MGC v. AT&T
       was not whether a failure to pay access charges was a violation of the
       Act, but "whether AT&T took the appropriate steps effectively to
       terminate the arrangement with MGC for the acceptance of originating
       access traffic." To the extent the Commission's decision in MGC can be
       read to stand for the proposition that a carrier's failure to pay
       access charges violates the Act, we hold that it is not good law.

   21. In sum, all three of the CLECs' claims rest on the assertion that
       AT&T's failure to pay their tariffed access charges violates section
       201(b) and/or section 203(c) of the Act. That assertion is erroneous.
       The law is settled that a carrier-customer's failure to pay tariffed
       access charges does not violate either section 201(b) or section
       203(c) of the Act. Accordingly, all three of All-American's claims
       must be denied for failure to state a claim cognizable under section
       208 (or any other provision) of the Act.

   IV. ordering clauses

   22. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED, pursuant to sections 4(i), 4(j), 201, 203,
       and 208 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. S:S:
       154(i), 154(j), 201, 203, and 208, that Count I of Complainants'
       Formal Complaint IS DENIED for failure to state a claim cognizable
       under section 208 of the Act.

   23. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED, pursuant to sections 4(i), 4(j), 201, 203,
       and 208 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. S:S:
       154(i), 154(j), 201, 203, and 208, that Count II of Complainants'
       Formal Complaint IS DENIED for failure to state a claim cognizable
       under section 208 of the Act.

   24. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED, pursuant to sections 4(i), 4(j), 201, 203,
       and 208 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. S:S:
       154(i), 154(j), 201, 203, and 208, that Count III of Complainants'
       Formal Complaint IS DENIED for failure to state a claim cognizable
       under section 208 of the Act.

   FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION

   Marlene H. Dortch

   Secretary

   Formal Complaint and Motion for Declaratory Ruling of All American
   Telephone Co., Inc., e-Pinnacle Communications, Inc., and ChaseCom, File
   No. EB-10-MD-003 (filed May 7, 2010) ("Complaint").

   47 U.S.C. S: 208.

   See All American Tel. Co., Inc. v. AT&T Corp., Order Referring Issues to
   the Federal Communications Commission, Case No. 1:07-cv-00861-WHP
   (S.D.N.Y. Feb. 5, 2010) ("Referral Order").

   47 U.S.C. S:S: 201(b) (requiring any carrier practice in connection with
   communication service to be just and reasonable), 203(c) (prohibiting any
   carrier from charging or collecting a different amount than the charges
   specified in its tariffs).

   Referral Order at 3. The Referral Order contains two very similarly-worded
   questions (questions 4 and 5b - see Referral Order at 3). See infra
   paragraph 6 (stating precise issues referred).

   In an April 2, 2010, letter ruling, the Commission directed the CLECs to
   file a formal complaint implementing questions 4 and 5b of the Referral
   Order. Letter to James F. Bendernagel, Jr., counsel for AT&T, and Jonathan
   E. Canis, counsel for the CLECs, from Lisa B. Griffin, Deputy Chief,
   EB/MDRD, File No. EB-10-MD-003 (filed Apr. 2, 2010) ("April 2 Letter
   Ruling"). The CLECs initially objected to this procedure, urging the
   Commission instead to resolve the referral by means of a declaratory
   ruling. Letter to Lisa B. Griffin, Deputy Chief EB/MDRD, from Jonathan E.
   Canis, counsel for the CLECs, File No. EB-10-MD-003 (filed Apr. 13, 2010)
   at 2.  The CLECs further asked the Commission to "provide assurance that
   their Formal Complaint will not be dismissed without resolving the issues
   on referral." Id. This Order resolves the issues presented by the Court.
   Moreover, the Commission has broad discretion in responding to a primary
   jurisdictional referral, as the CLECs acknowledge. Legal Analysis, File
   No. EB-10-MD-003 (filed May 7, 2010) ("Complaint Legal Analysis") at 20. 
   The procedural method used to implement the Referral Order has no bearing
   on the substantive outcome.  Whether stemming from a petition for
   declaratory ruling pursuant to section 1.2 of the Commission's rules, 47
   C.F.R. S: 1.2, or a formal complaint pursuant to section 208 of the Act,
   47 U.S.C. S: 208, the Commission's finding is that AT&T's refusal to pay
   the CLECs' charges, and AT&T's failure to file a "rate complaint," do not
   violate the Act.

   See, e.g., Joint Statement of Stipulated Facts, Disputed Facts, and Key
   Legal Issues, File No. EB-10-MD-003 (filed July 16, 2010) ("Joint
   Statement") at 2-3, P:P: 2-4.

   See, e.g., Joint Statement at 2, P: 1; Complaint at 14, P: 38; AT&T
   Corp.'s Answer to Formal Complaint, File No. EB-10-MD-003 (filed June 14,
   2010) ("Answer") at 14, P: 38.

   See, e.g., Joint Statement at 10, P:P: 40-44.

   See, e.g., Joint Statement at 11, P:P: 48-49. Terminating access service
   is provided by local exchange carriers to IXCs to enable the IXCs'
   customers to complete calls to the local exchange carriers' customers.
   See, e.g., In the Matter of Petition of Qwest Corporation for Forbearance
   Pursuant to 47 U.S.C. S: 160(c) in the Phoenix, Arizona Metropolitan
   Statistical Area, Memorandum Opinion and Order, 25 FCC Rcd 8622, 8678 , P:
   111 (2010).

   Joint Statement at 11, P:P: 48-49. All American billed AT&T $10,932,565 in
   terminating switched access services, plus late payment penalties of
   $3,446,169, and it continues to bill AT&T each month for those services.
   Joint Statement at 11, P: 52. ChaseCom billed AT&T $44,240 in terminating
   switched access services, plus late payment penalties of $24,566. Joint
   Statement at 12, P: 54. e-Pinnacle billed AT&T $196,744 in terminating
   switched access service, plus late payment penalties of $8,519. Joint
   Statement at 12, P: 56.

   Joint Statement at 11, P: 50.

   Joint Statement at 13, P: 62.

   Connecting America: The National Broadband Plan, 2010 WL 972375 at *126
   (F.C.C. Mar. 16, 2010) (describing "access stimulation" as a scheme in
   which "carriers artificially inflate the amount of minutes subject to
   [intercarrier compensation] payments," and noting that some companies have
   established "free" conference calling services "which provide free
   services to consumers while the carrier and conference call company share
   the [intercarrier compensation] revenues paid by interexchange carriers").

   Joint Statement at 11, P: 48. AT&T paid $249,015 to All American, $336 to
   ChaseCom, and $3,145 to e-Pinnacle. Joint Statement at 11, P: 52, 12, P:P:
   54, 56.

   Joint Statement at 11, P: 48.

   Joint Statement at 11, P: 48.

   Joint Statement at 4, P: 11.

   Joint Statement at 4, P: 11.

   Joint Statement at 4, P: 12.

   Joint Statement at 4-5, P: 12.

   Joint Statement at 5, P: 12.

   Referral Order at 3.

   April 2 Letter Ruling at 2. Prior to the primary jurisdiction referral
   addressed in this Order, the Court had issued a separate referral
   concerning AT&T's "sham entity" counterclaims. See All American Telephone
   Co. v. AT&T, Inc., Memorandum & Order, 2009 WL 691325 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 16,
   2009). To effectuate that referral, AT&T filed a formal complaint with the
   Commission pursuant to section 208 of the Act. The April 2 Letter Ruling
   ordered AT&T to amend the formal complaint it had filed in that
   proceeding, AT&T Corp. v. All American Tel. Co., Inc., File No.
   EB-09-MD-010 ("AT&T v. All American"), to address the remaining issues
   referred by the Court. Therefore, this Order addresses only issues 4 and
   5b referred by the Court. The Order does not express any view regarding
   the issues raised in AT&T v. All American.

   Complaint at 24-25.

   Complaint at 25.

   See supra note 8.

   Reply and Legal Analysis in Support of Formal Complaint and/or Request for
   Declaratory Ruling of All American Telephone Co., Inc., e-Pinnacle
   Communications, Inc., and Chasecom, File No. EB-10-MD-003 (filed July 6,
   2010) ("Reply").

   See  supra note 7; Joint Statement Pursuant to 47 C.F.R. S:
   1.733(b)(1)(i)-(iv), File No. EB-10-MD-003 (filed July 16, 2010). 

   Letter to Jonathan E. Canis, counsel for the CLECs, and James F.
   Bendernagel, counsel for AT&T, from Lisa B. Griffin, Deputy Chief,
   EB/MDRD, File No. EB-10-MD-003 (filed July 28, 2010). See, e.g., 47 C.F.R.
   S: 1.732(c) ("In cases in which discovery is not conducted, absent an
   order by the Commission that briefs be filed, parties may not submit
   briefs."); Amendment of Rules Governing Procedures To Be Followed When
   Formal Complaints Are Filed Against Common Carriers, Report and Order, 12
   FCC Rcd 22497 (1997) (subsequent history omitted) at 22508, P:P: 22-23;
   22529, P: 71; 22534, P: 81; 22536, P: 87; and 22605-6, P: 267 (The
   Commission's formal complaint rules "were designed to promote fact-based
   pleadings and to shift the focus of fact-finding away from costly,
   time-consuming discovery and towards the pre-filing and initial complaint
   and answer periods . . . [P]arties shall be generally prohibited from
   filing briefs in cases in which no discovery is conducted.").

   47 U.S.C. S: 208 (authorizing the Commission to adjudicate complaints
   regarding "anything done or omitted to be done by any common carrier
   subject to this Act, in contravention of the provisions thereof"). See
   Global Crossing Telecommunications, Inc. v. Metrophones
   Telecommunications, Inc., 55 U.S. 45, 52-58 (2007).

   Contel of the South, Inc. v. Operator Communications, Inc., Memorandum
   Opinion and Order, 23 FCC Rcd 548, 551, 555-56, P:P: 7, 19 (2008) (quoting
   U.S. TelePacific Corp. v. Tel-America of Salt Lake City, Inc., Memorandum
   Opinion and Order, 19 FCC Rcd 24552, 24555-56, P: 8 (2004) ("[T]he
   Commission does not act as a collection agent for carriers with respect to
   unpaid tariffed charges")); Qwest Communications Corp. v. Farmers and
   Merchants Mutual Telephone Corp., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 22 FCC Rcd
   17973, 17984-85, P: 29 (2007) (subsequent history omitted) ("[A]ny
   complaint by Farmers to recover [tariffed access] fees allegedly owed by
   Qwest would constitute a `collection action,' which the Commission has
   repeatedly declined to entertain"); In the Matter of Developing a Unified
   Intercarrier Compensation Regime; T-Mobile Petition for Declaratory Ruling
   Regarding Incumbent LEC Wireless Termination Tariffs, Declaratory Ruling
   and Report and Order, 20 FCC Rcd 4855, 4861 n.40 (2005) ("A complaint
   requesting that we make such findings [regarding specific obligations of
   any customer of any carrier to pay any tariffed charges] would not state a
   cause of action for which the Commission can grant relief"); In the Matter
   of Petition for Declaratory Ruling that AT&T's Phone-to-Phone IP Telephony
   Services are Exempt from Access Charges, Order, 19 FCC Rcd 7457, 7472 n.93
   (2004) (same as U.S. TelePacific v. Tel-America); Graphnet, Inc. v. AT&T
   Corp., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 17 FCC Rcd 1131, 1135, P: 12 (2002)
   ("[T]he obligations of section 203(c) apply to the carrier that filed the
   tariff"); AT&T Corp. v. BellAtlantic-Pennsylvania, Memorandum Opinion and
   Order, 14 FCC Rcd 556, 598-600 & n.240 (1998) (stating that "the
   Commission has no authority" to conduct "adjudications of carrier's rights
   against their customers"); Beehive Tele., Inc. v. Bell Operating Cos.,
   Memorandum Opinion and Order, 10 FCC Rcd 10562,10569, & n.90 (1995)
   (subsequent history omitted) ("This Commission is not a collection agent
   for carriers with respect to unpaid tariffed charges;" thus, "[t]he BOCs'
   cross-claim does not allege a violation of the Act over which we have
   jurisdiction") (interior quotation marks omitted); Illinois Bell Tel. Co.
   v. AT&T, Order, 4 FCC Rcd 5268, 5270, P: 18 (1989) ("The complaints do not
   allege that AT&T, in its role as a carrier, acted or failed to act in
   contravention of the Communications Act ... Rather, they allege
   conditionally that AT&T may have failed to pay the lawful charge for
   service. Such allegations do not state a cause of action under the
   complaint procedures and are properly dismissed."), recon. denied, 4 FCC
   Rcd 7759, 7760, P: 3 (1989) ("BOCs, as carriers, may not bring a complaint
   against AT&T in its capacity as a customer."). Accord American Sharecom,
   Inc. v. Mountain States Tele. & Telegraph Co., Memorandum Opinion and
   Order, 8 FCC Rcd 6727 (Com. Car. Bur. 1993); C.F. Communications Corp. v.
   Century Tel. of Wisconsin, Memorandum Opinion and Order, 8 FCC Rcd 7334
   (Com. Car. Bur. 1993) (subsequent history omitted); Long Distance/USA,
   Inc. v. Bell Tel. Co. of Pa., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 7 FCC Rcd 408
   (Com. Car. Bur. 1992); America's Choice Communications, Inc. v. LCI
   International Telecom Corp., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 11 FCC Rcd
   22494, 22504 (FC&I Br., Enf. Div., Com. Car. Bur. 1996); Tel-Central v.
   United Tel. Co., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 4 FCC Rcd 8338, 8340-41, P:
   16 (1989)  ("Tel-Central v. Unitel") ("[T]h[e] statutory scheme does not
   constitute the Commission as collection agent for carriers with respect to
   unpaid tariffed charges. In the normal situation, if a carrier has failed
   to pay the lawful charges for services or facilities obtained from another
   carrier, the recourse of the unpaid carrier is an action in contract to
   compel payment...."). We will refer collectively to all of the foregoing
   orders as the "Collection Action Orders."

   See, e.g., MCI Telecommunications Corp. v. FCC, 59 F.3d 1407, 1418 (D.C.
   Cir. 1995), cert. denied, 517 U.S. 1129 (1996) (declining to permit the
   Commission to reduce the damages that a carrier owed its customer-carrier
   by the amount the customer-carrier allegedly owed the carrier, "because
   this would involve a determination of the carrier's rights against a
   subscriber, over which th[e] Commission has no jurisdiction") (quoting
   Thornell Barnes Co. v. Illinois Bell Telephone Co., Decision, 1 FCC 2d
   1247, 1275, P: 67  (1965)); American Telephone & Telegraph Co. v. The
   People's Network, Inc., 1993 WL 248165, at *15 (D.N.J. 1993) ("AT&T's only
   recourse against [its customer] TPN is in an action in contract to compel
   payment of the unpaid charges in this court. Complete relief cannot be
   afforded before the FCC, which simply lacks the collection remedies for
   AT&T which this court provides.") (interior quotation marks omitted).

   Reply at 15. The Complaint does not address the Collection Action Orders.
   The Reply attempts unsuccessfully to distinguish one - Graphnet v. AT&T,
   supra. Reply at 17. Although the CLECs correctly observe that Graphnet v.
   AT&T involved, among other things, an allegation of traffic mis-routing,
   they do not explain how that fact makes a difference. The core holding of
   Graphnet v. AT&T - that section 203(c) of the Act governs the
   tariffing-carrier's obligations, not the customer-carrier's obligations -
   applies to traffic pricing as well as traffic routing. As the Commission
   stated: "We agree with AT&T that Graphnet has not met its burden of
   proving a violation of section 203(c). As is evident from the statute's
   language, the obligations imposed by section 203(c) apply to the carrier
   that filed the tariff. In this case, that carrier is Graphnet, which seeks
   to enforce its tariff against AT&T. Section 203(c) simply does not control
   AT&T's obligations here." 17 FCC Rcd at 1135, P: 12.

   See, e.g., Reply at 16.

   See, e.g., Complaint at 8, P:P: 21, 23; Complaint, Legal Analysis at 5-9,
   12, 17-19; Reply at 6, 17 (citing Communique Telecommunications, Inc.
   d/b/a LOGICALL, Declaratory Ruling and Order, 10 FCC Rcd 10399 (Com. Car.
   Bur. 1995), aff'd,  14 FCC Rcd 13635 (1999); MCI Telecommunications Corp.,
   Memorandum Opinion and Order, 62 FCC 2d 703 (1976); Business WATS, Inc. v.
   AT&T Co., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 7 FCC Rcd 7942 (Com. Car. Bur.
   1992); NOS Commc'ns, Inc. v. AT&T Co., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 7 FCC
   Rcd 7889 (Com. Car. Bur. 1992); Affinity Network, Inc. v. AT&T Co.,
   Memorandum Opinion and Order, 7 FCC Rcd 7885 (Com. Car. Bur. 1992);
   Business Choice Network v. AT&T Co., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 7 FCC
   Rcd 7702 (Com. Car. Bur. 1992)).

   None of the orders cited by the CLECs (1) involves a claim for collection
   of tariffed charges; (2) holds that the alleged failure to pay tariffed
   charges constitutes a violation of the Act; (3) requires a carrier to pay
   the tariffed charges allegedly owed; or (4) distinguishes or even mentions
   any of the Collection Action Orders. See Bell-Atlantic Delaware, Inc. v.
   Global NAPs, Inc., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 15 FCC Rcd 20665, 20677,
   P: 29 (2000) (holding that "these cases [on which the CLECs rely here]
   only mean that the use of `self-help' undercuts a claim of irreparable
   injury for the purpose of emergency relief."). See also American Telephone
   & Telegraph Co. v. NOS Communications, Inc., 830 F. Supp. 225, 228-29
   (D.N.J. 1993).

   See, e.g., Complaint Legal Analysis at 7, 12, 17; Reply at 6-7 (citing
   Allnet v. The Bell Atlantic Telephone Companies, Memorandum Opinion and
   Order, 8 FCC Rcd 5438 (1993); MCI Telecommunications Corp. v. American
   Telephone and Telegraph Co., Decision, 94 FCC 2d 332 (1983); Brooten v.
   AT&T, Memorandum Opinion and Order, 12 FCC Rcd 13343, 13351 n.53 (Com.
   Car. Bur. 1997); National Communications Association, Inc. v. American
   Telephone and Telegraph Co., 2001 WL 99856 (S.D.N.Y. 2001)). The CLECs
   also rely on a Wireline Competition Bureau order holding that carriers may
   not engage in "unreasonable call blocking" in response to access charges
   perceived to be unlawful. See, e.g., Complaint at 25, Complaint Legal
   Analysis at 6, Reply at 6-7 (citing In re Establishing Just and Reasonable
   Rates for Local Exchange Carriers; Call-Blocking by Carriers, Declaratory
   Ruling and Order, 22 FCC Rcd 11629 (Wireline Comp. Bur. June 28, 2007) 
   ("WCB Call Blocking Order")). That Order has no bearing on this case,
   however, because AT&T has not blocked calls, and its failure to pay the
   CLECs' access charges therefore has no effect on "the ubiquity and
   reliability of the nation's telecommunications network." WCB Call Blocking
   Order, 22 FCC Rcd at 11629, P: 1.

   See, e.g., Complaint Legal Analysis at 7, Reply at 6 (citing Tel-Central
   v. Unitel).

   Tel-Central v. Unitel, 4 FCC Rcd at 8340-41, P: 16.

   There are two additional "self-help" cases similar to those cited by the
   CLECs. See Carpenter Radio Co., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 70 FCC 2d
   1756 (1979); The Bell Telephone Co. of Pennsylvania, Memorandum Opinion
   and Order, 66 FCC 2d 703 (1977). Those cases also are not persuasive, for
   the same reasons explained above.

   Reform of Access Charges Imposed by Competitive Local Exchange Carriers,
   Seventh Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, 16 FCC
   Rcd 9923 (2001) ("2001 CLEC Access Charge Reform Order").

   See, e.g., Complaint at 7-9, 19, P:P: 17, 19, 22, 23, 61; Complaint Legal
   Analysis at 8, 9, 11, 12, 15, 16; Reply at 7, 8, 11.

   2001 CLEC Access Charge Reform Order, 16 FCC Rcd at 9932, P: 23.

   2001 CLEC Access Charge Reform Order, 16 FCC Rcd at 9948, P: 60  (emphasis
   added). See also id. at 9964, n.188 (stating that "[t]his order's creation
   of a presumption that rates at or below the tariff benchmark are just and
   reasonable will facilitate CLECs' attempts to collect their access charges
   through an action in the appropriate court") (emphasis added).

   2001 CLEC Access Reform Order, 16 FCC Rcd at 9957, P: 85.

   2001 CLEC Access Charge Reform Order, 16 FCC Rcd at 9924, P: 3. In a part
   of the 2001 CLEC Access Charge Reform Order not referenced by the CLECs, a
   remark is made that the Act and Commission rules require IXCs to pay
   tariffed CLEC access charges. 2001 CLEC Access Charge Reform Order, 16 FCC
   Rcd at 9934-35, P: 28. This remark, however, merely reinforces the
   undisputed notion that tariffs govern carrier-customer relationships and
   that "parties are precluded from negotiating separate agreements that
   affect the rate for services once a tariff has been filed." See id at
   n.71. Therefore, we view this remark as inconsequential to the analysis
   here.

   See, e.g., Complaint Legal Analysis at 7-8 (citing APCC Services, Inc. v.
   Radiant Telecom, Inc., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 23 FCC Rcd 8962
   (2008); Global Crossing Telecommunications, Inc. v. Metrophones
   Telecommunications, Inc. 550 U.S. 45 (2007); APCC Services, Inc. v.
   Network IP, LLC, Memorandum Opinion and Order, 20 FCC Rcd 2073 (2005);
   Bell Atlantic-Delaware v. Frontier Communications Services, Inc., Order on
   Review, 15 FCC Rcd 7475 (2000)).

   Complaint Legal Analysis at 8.

   Contel of the South, Inc. v. Operator Communications, Inc., Memorandum
   Opinion and Order, 23 FCC Rcd 548, 551 (2008); Telepacific Corp. v.
   Tel-American of Salt Lake City, Memorandum Opinion and Order, 19 FCC Rcd
   24552, 24555-56, nn. 27, 28, 29 (2004).

   47 U.S.C. S: 276.

   47 C.F.R. S:S: 64.1300 - 64.1340.

   See, e.g., APCC Services, Inc. v. Radiant Telecom, Inc., Memorandum
   Opinion and Order, 23 FCC Rcd 8962 (2008); APCC Services, Inc., et al. v.
   Network IP, LLC, et al., Order on Review, 21 FCC Rcd 10488, 10492-95, P:P:
   10-16 (2006), aff'd in relevant part and remanded in part sub nom.,
   NetworkIP, LLP v. FCC, 548 F.3d 116 (D.C. Cir. 2008); Pay Telephone
   Reclassification and Compensation Provisions of the Telecommunications Act
   of 1996, Report and Order, 18 FCC Rcd 19975, 19990, P: 32 (2003); see also
   Metrophones Telecommunications, Inc. v. Global Crossing
   Telecommunications, Inc., 423 F.3d 1056, 1067-70 (9th Cir. 2005) (and
   Commission orders cited therein), aff'd, Global Crossing
   Telecommunications, Inc. v. Metrophones Telecommunications, Inc., 550 U.S.
   45 (2007).

   See, e.g., 47 U.S.C. S: 203; 47 C.F.R. S:S: 69.1 - 69.731; see n.32,
   supra. See generally 2001 CLEC Access Charge Reform Order, 16 FCC Rcd at
   9957 (stating that "our tariff rules were historically intended to protect
   purchasers of service from monopoly providers, not to protect sellers from
   monopsony purchasing power"); In the Matter of Communique
   Telecommunications, Inc., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 14 FCC Rcd 13635,
   13649, P: 26 (1999) (subsequent history omitted) (stating that "[a]lthough
   some provisions of the Act protect ratepayers and others benefit common
   carriers, there is no statutory entitlement to a perfectly balanced
   regulatory regime. ICTC's notion of absolute symmetry in carrier and
   ratepayer remedies is not embodied in the Act") (quotation marks and
   footnotes omitted).

   Qwest Communications Corp. v. Farmers and Merchants Mutual Telephone Co.,
   Second Order on Reconsideration, 24 FCC Rcd 14801 (2009) ("Qwest v.
   Farmers").

   Complaint at 6, P: 12, Complaint Legal Analysis at 9, 10; Reply at 6, n.6
   (citing Qwest v. Farmers, 24 FCC Rcd at 14812 n.96).

   Complaint Legal Analysis at 9-10.

   MGC Communications, Inc. v. AT&T Corp., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 14
   FCC Rcd 11647 (Com. Car. Bur.), aff'd, MGC Communications, Inc. v. AT&T
   Corp., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 15 FCC Rcd 308 (1999) (collectively,
   "MGC v. AT&T").

   Advamtel, LLC v. Sprint Communications Co., 125 F.Supp.2d 800, 807 (E.D.
   Va. 2001) (subsequent history omitted).

   See, supra note 32 (first six orders cited).

   Telepacific v. Tel-America, 19 FCC Rcd at 24555, n.27; IP Telephone
   Declaratory Ruling, 19 FCC Rcd at 7471-72, n.93.

   MGC v. AT&T, 14 FCC Rcd at 11651, P: 7. Because neither party involved in
   MGC acknowledged the existence of the Collection Action Orders, such
   orders were not addressed in either the Bureau or Commission decisions in
   that proceeding. We note that the Commission's rules require parties to
   formal complaint proceedings, among other things, to distinguish opposing
   legal authority and to ensure that relevant legal authorities are current
   and updated as necessary. See, e.g., 47 C.F.R. S: 1.720(e), (g).

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   Federal Communications Commission FCC 11-5