Regulatory analysis

Overview

Bates White experts work with attorneys and regulatory affairs staff to manage the strategic and practical aspects of regulatory matters and to provide expert analysis and support before federal, state, and international regulatory bodies. Bates White combines knowledge of regulatory economics with deep experience in competition economics to provide insights into the ways that platform convergence is blurring the line between competition and regulatory policy. Our experts have testified, made presentations, and submitted reports to state, federal, and overseas regulators on issues such as the unbundling obligations of local exchange carriers, auction design, the impact of exclusive programming rules on the distribution of video programming, net neutrality, and wireless neutrality. Our clients have included long distance telephone companies, incumbent and competitive local exchange carriers, regulatory agencies, wireless telephone companies, and cable companies.

  • Submitted a statement addressing geographic market definition, spectrum share screens, and other issues to the FCC on behalf of the Communications Workers of America regarding the proposed merger of AT&T and T-Mobile USA.
  • Provided economic analysis of the potential for foreclosure of programmers on behalf of Bloomberg. Conditions were imposed on the transaction to protect Bloomberg TV and other competitors of Comcast-NBC Universal’s business news network CNBC from being disadvantaged.
  • Conducted economic analysis on behalf of a video programming distributor about vertical foreclosure issues and other possible effects arising from the merger of Comcast and NBC Universal. Assisted the client in meetings with DOJ.
  • Supported expert testimony to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in connection with the proposed merger of AT&T and BellSouth. Focused on likely competitive effects in markets for Internet backbone services. Analyzed concerns relating to issues of net neutrality.
  • On behalf of Qwest Communications, submitted expert affidavits before the FCC and presented before DOJ regarding the competitive effects of the acquisition of MCI by Verizon Communications and AT&T by SBC Communications. 
  • On behalf of AT&T, prepared a paper analyzing whether net neutrality-type rules should be imposed on the wireless industry. Conducted in-depth analysis of structure and performance of the U.S. wireless industry. Findings indicated industry conditions and practices are inconsistent with an industry in need of regulation. 
  • Submitted a white paper and made presentations to the staff of the FCC and the staffs of FCC Commissioners regarding proposed rules concerning the unbundling obligations of local exchange carriers. Analysis considered issues of market definition, as well as standards and tests for determining impairment. 
  • Provided expert testimony before the FCC in connection with rules pertaining to exclusive contracts between vertically integrated content providers and cable companies. Analysis focused on growing competition in video distribution, trends in vertical integration among content providers, and issues in “must have” programming. 
  • Served as the government’s expert related to Section 271 provisions of the Telecom Act and developed criteria to determine when local exchange services were sufficiently competitive to permit entry by the regional Bell companies into long distance. 
  • Assisted COFETEL, the Mexican telecommunications regulator, in drafting rules pertaining to accounting separation obligations for wireline and wireless operators. 
  • Quantified the benefits of telecommunications deregulation in Germany and other major European countries for Deutsche Telekom. 
  • Assisted the telecommunications regulator in Singapore regarding the introduction of a price cap on retail voice telephony services. 
  • Served as the representative for Italy in the European organization of national regulatory authorities (working group on assessment of significant market power) and in meetings with the European Union.