Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Verizon Net Neutrality Suit Dismissed by Appeals Court

Logo of the United States Federal Communicatio...Image via WikipediaThe Jurist Website (http://jurist.law.pitt.edu) reports that the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit has tossed Verizon's lawsuit against the Federal Communications Commission challenging net neutrality rules.

In Verizon v. FCC (Case No. 11-1014), the appellate court, in a two-page per curiam opinion, allowed the FCC's motion to dismiss Verizon's complaint on the grounds that it was filed prematurely, thereby depriving the appellate court of jurisdiction.  Verizon and MetroPCS filed suit in January contesting the net neutrality rules that empower the government to regulate the Internet's traffic and maintain the World Wide Web as a free communication platform.

The lawsuit was deemed premature because the document Verizon seeks to derail has yet to be published in the Federal Register pursuant to 47 C.F.R. sec. 1.4(b)(1), and, therefore, is not yet a "licensing decision."  Verizon (motto: "Can We Sue You Yet?") plans to re-file its complaint once the rule-making document appears in the Federal Register. Verizon is leery that the FCC's authority would be unduly broadened by the net neutrality measure.

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