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CenturyLink, Inc.

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Released: May 22, 2013
Federal Communications Commission DA 13-1070

Before the

Federal Communications Commission

Washington, DC 20554

In the Matter of
)
File No.: EB-12-IH-0676
)

CENTURYLINK, INC.

)
Acct. No.: 201332080021
)
)
FRN: 0018626853

ORDER

Adopted: May 21, 2013

Released: May 22, 2013
By the Chief, Enforcement Bureau:
1.
In this Order, we adopt the attached Consent Decree entered into between the
Enforcement Bureau (Bureau) of the Federal Communications Commission (Commission) and
CenturyLink, Inc. (CenturyLink). The Consent Decree terminates and resolves an investigation by the
Bureau’s into whether CenturyLink violated certain terms and conditions imposed by the Commission in
its 2011 Memorandum Opinion and Order approving the transfer of control of licenses and authorizations
from Qwest Communications International Inc. to CenturyLink.1
2.
A copy of the Consent Decree negotiated by the Bureau and CenturyLink, which includes
a three-year compliance plan requirement, is attached hereto and incorporated by reference.
3.
After reviewing the terms of the Consent Decree and evaluating the facts before us, we
find the public interest would be served by adopting the Consent Decree and terminating the
investigation.
4.
In the absence of material new evidence relating to this matter, we conclude the
investigation raises no substantial or material questions of fact as to whether CenturyLink possesses the
basic qualifications, including those related to character, to hold or obtain any Commission license or
authorization.
5.
Accordingly,

IT IS ORDERED

, pursuant to Sections 4(i), 4(j), and 503(b) of the
Communications Act of 1934, as amended,2 and Sections 0.111 and 0.311 of the Commission’s rules,3 the
Consent Decree attached to this Order

IS ADOPTED

.

1 See Applications filed by Qwest Communications International Inc. and CenturyTel, Inc. d/b/a CenturyLink for
Consent to Transfer Control
, Memorandum Opinion and Order, WC Docket No. 10-110, 26 FCC Rcd 4194 (March
18, 2011).
2 47 U.S.C. §§ 154(i), 154(j), 503(b).
3 47 C.F.R §§ 0.111, 0.311.

Federal Communications Commission

DA 13-1070
6.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED

that the above-captioned investigation

IS

TERMINATED

.
7.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED

that a copy of this Order and Consent Decree shall be
sent by first class mail and certified mail, return receipt requested, to counsel for CenturyLink, David H.
Solomon, Wilkinson Barker Knauer LLP, 2300 N Street, N.W., Suite 700, Washington, DC 20037-1128.
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
P. Michele Ellison
Chief, Enforcement Bureau
2

Federal Communications Commission DA 13-1070

Before the

Federal Communications Commission

Washington, DC 20554

In the Matter of
)
File No.: EB-12-IH-0676
)

CENTURYLINK, INC.

)
Acct. No.: 201332080021
)
)
FRN: 0018626853

CONSENT DECREE

The Enforcement Bureau of the Federal Communications Commission and CenturyLink, Inc., by
their authorized representatives, hereby enter into this Consent Decree for the purpose of terminating the
Enforcement Bureau’s investigation into possible violations by CenturyLink of certain terms and
conditions imposed by the Commission in its 2011 Memorandum Opinion and Order approving the
transfer of control of licenses and authorizations from Qwest Communications International Inc. to
CenturyLink.1

I.

DEFINITIONS

1.
For the purposes of this Consent Decree, the following definitions shall apply:
(a) “Act” means the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. § 151 et seq.
(b) “Adopting Order” means an order of the Bureau adopting the terms of this Consent
Decree without change, addition, deletion, or modification.
(c) “Bureau” means the Enforcement Bureau of the Federal Communications
Commission.
(d) “CenturyLink” or “Company” means CenturyLink, Inc. and its predecessors-in-
interest and successors-in-interest.
(e) “Commission” and “FCC” mean the Federal Communications Commission and all
of its bureaus and offices.
(f) “Communications Laws” means collectively, the Act, the Rules, and the published
and promulgated orders and decisions of the Commission to which Century, Inc. is
subject by virtue of its business activities.
(g) “Compliance Plan” means the compliance obligations, program, and procedures
described in this Consent Decree at paragraph 13.
(h) “Conditions” means the requirements set forth in Appendix C, Paragraphs II.A and
II.B of the Merger Order.

1 See Applications filed by Qwest Communications International Inc. and CenturyTel, Inc. d/b/a CenturyLink for
Consent to Transfer Control
, Memorandum Opinion and Order, WC Docket No. 10-110, 26 FCC Rcd 4194 (March
18, 2011).

Federal Communications Commission

DA 13-1070
(i) “Covered Employees” means all employees and agents of CenturyLink who
perform, or supervise, oversee, or manage the performance of, CenturyLink’s
implementation of responsibilities under Appendix C, Paragraphs II.A and II.B of
the Merger Order.
(j) “Effective Date” means the date on which the Bureau releases the Adopting Order.
(k) “Investigation” means the investigation commenced by the Bureau into
CenturyLink’s compliance with the terms and conditions imposed in the Merger
Order relating to the offering of discounted broadband Internet service and computer
equipment to low income consumers.
(l) “Merger Order” means Applications filed by Qwest Communications International
Inc. and CenturyTel, Inc. d/b/a CenturyLink for Consent to Transfer Control,
Memorandum Opinion and Order, WC Docket No. 10-110, 26 FCC Rcd 4194
(March 18, 2011).
(m) “Operating Procedures” means the standard, internal operating procedures and
compliance policies established by CenturyLink to implement the Compliance Plan.
(n) “Parties” means CenturyLink and the Bureau, each of which is a “Party.”
(o) “Rules” means the Commission’s regulations found in Title 47 of the Code of
Federal Regulations.

II.

BACKGROUND

2.
On March 8, 2011, the Commission released the Merger Order in which it conditionally
approved the merger of CenturyLink and Qwest Communications International Inc., with the combined
company doing business as CenturyLink. The Merger Order stated the following:
To encourage broadband adoption throughout the merged company's territory,
CenturyLink has committed to make discounted broadband Internet access service
available to households that qualify for Lifeline service and meet certain other eligibility
criteria, offering a service with 1.5 Mbps downstream capability to eligible customers at
an initial rate of $9.95 per month, with comparable discounts for higher-speed services.
CenturyLink will offer discounted computer equipment to customers who subscribe to
one of these discounted broadband services. In conjunction with this broadband adoption
program, CenturyLink has committed to institute a broadband promotion, education, and
training program, and to make data about the adoption program and its results public to
facilitate analysis of the effectiveness of these programs. These commitments are
consistent with the Applicants' asserted benefit of expanding broadband to more
customers; accordingly, we accept the commitments in Appendix C and make them
binding and enforceable conditions of our approval.2
3.
Appendix C, Paragraph II, of the Merger Order more specifically set forth CenturyLink’s
commitments to offer discounted broadband service to qualifying customers3 and discounted equipment

2 See Merger Order at ¶ 36 (footnotes omitted).
3 A “qualifying customer” was defined in Appendix C of the Merger Order as “a customer who: (i) is eligible for
Lifeline telephone service in CenturyLink or Qwest ILEC service territory; (ii) is not a CenturyLink or Qwest
2

Federal Communications Commission

DA 13-1070
to enrolled customers.4 Specifically, Appendix C, Paragraph II, among other things, stated the following
Conditions:
A. Service Discount: CenturyLink will offer discounted broadband Internet service for
no more than $9.95 a month during the first 12 months of service, and $14.95 a
month for the remainder of the service term, to all qualifying customers in the
combined CenturyLink and Qwest territory. As a rule, the qualifying customer will
gain access to 1.5 Mbps downstream capability, except in markets where 1.5 Mbps is
unavailable, in which case the customer will gain access to 768 kbps broadband
capability. Higher bandwidth services, where available, will be offered at a
comparable discount:
1.5 Mbps
5 Mbps
12 Mbps
Ongoing
Discounted
$14.95
$19.95
$24.95
Monthly Rate
This discount plan will become available in all markets within six months following
the Merger Closing Date and will remain open for five years following the
availability of the adoption program in that market. At any time during that five-year
period, a qualifying customer may enroll in this service plan once, and he or she may
choose a term of as little as one year, which may be extended at the customer’s
option on a month-to-month basis for as long as five years . . . .
B. Equipment Discount: CenturyLink will offer enrolled customers the ability to obtain
one piece of computer equipment (such as a netbook) per household, pre-configured
with operating software and Internet-ready, and with customary warranty from the
manufacturer when available, for no more than $150, provided that the customer
agrees to a two-year broadband services contract at the discounted rate described
above . . . . 5
4.
CenturyLink’s obligation to offer discounted broadband service and discounted
equipment to the public became effective on October 1, 2011 in all markets within which the merged
company offered broadband service. Shortly thereafter, the Commission received two complaints
concerning CenturyLink’s compliance with its commitments to offer discounted broadband service and
equipment to qualified customers. In one, a consumer complained of having been informed by a
CenturyLink customer service representative that CenturyLink requires anyone desiring to sign up for
discounted broadband service to also purchase CenturyLink’s Lifeline wireline service. In the other, a
consumer complained of having been informed by a CenturyLink customer service representative that
CenturyLink does not offer discounted computer equipment.
5.
Upon receipt of these complaints, the Bureau commenced its Investigation. As part of
the Investigation, over a two week period in August 2012 Bureau staff placed telephone calls to

broadband subscriber at the time of enrollment; and (iii) is not the subject of CenturyLink or Qwest collections
activity.” See Merger Order, Appendix C, at ¶ II.
4 An “enrolled customer” was defined in Appendix C of the Merger Order as “a qualifying customer who enrolls in
a contract to purchase broadband service from CenturyLink for a term of at least one year and who remains a
qualifying customer for the full term of his or her contract, including any extension on a month-to-month basis.”
See Merger Order, Appendix C, ¶ II.A.
5 See Merger Order, Appendix C, ¶ II.B.
3

Federal Communications Commission

DA 13-1070
CenturyLink’s national toll-free customer service number to evaluate the accuracy of information being
disseminated by the Company about its discounted service and equipment offerings for low-income
persons. Additionally, the Bureau directed a Letter of Inquiry to CenturyLink requesting specific
information about the Company’s compliance with Appendix C, Paragraph II, of the Merger Order.6
6.
CenturyLink responded to the LOI on September 17, 2012 and November 5, 2012.7 In its
response, CenturyLink stated that it attempted in good faith to properly train its customer service
representatives about the Company’s obligations under Appendix C, Paragraphs II.A and II.B of the
Merger Order. CenturyLink conceded that there had been some confusion among some of its customer
service representatives about the terms of the Company’s discounted broadband service and equipment
programs. As a consequence, and despite its efforts to remedy the situation, CenturyLink stated that its
customer service representatives may have provided inaccurate information about the programs to an
unspecified number of inquiring consumers.
7.
After considering CenturyLink’s response to the LOI, the Parties entered into settlement
negotiations aimed at resolving the Investigation.

III.

TERMS OF AGREEMENT

8.

Adopting Order

. The Parties agree that the provisions of this Consent Decree shall be
subject to final approval by the Bureau by incorporation of such provisions by reference in the Adopting
Order.
9.

Jurisdiction

. CenturyLink agrees that the Bureau has jurisdiction over it and the matters
contained in this Consent Decree and that the Bureau has the authority to enter into and adopt this
Consent Decree.
10.

Effective Date; Violations

. The Parties agree that this Consent Decree shall become
effective on the Effective Date as defined herein. As of the Effective Date, the Adopting Order and this
Consent Decree shall have the same force and effect as any other order of the Commission. Any violation
of the Adopting Order or of the terms of this Consent Decree shall constitute a separate violation of a
Commission order, entitling the Commission to exercise any rights and remedies attendant to the
enforcement of a Commission order.
11.

Termination of Investigation

. In express reliance on the covenants and representations
in this Consent Decree and to avoid further expenditure of public resources, the Bureau agrees to
terminate the Investigation. In consideration for the termination of the Investigation, CenturyLink agrees
to the terms, conditions, and procedures contained herein. The Bureau further agrees that in the absence
of new material evidence, the Bureau will not use the facts developed in the Investigation through the
Effective Date, or the existence of this Consent Decree, to institute on its own motion any new
proceeding, formal or informal, or take any action on its own motion against CenturyLink concerning the
matters that were the subject of the Investigation. The Bureau also agrees that in the absence of new
material evidence it will not use the facts developed in the Investigation through the Effective Date, or the
existence of this Consent Decree, to institute on its own motion any proceeding, formal or informal, or

6 See Letter of Inquiry from Gary Schonman, Special Counsel, Investigations & Hearings Division, Enforcement
Bureau, to Melissa Newman, Vice President-Federal Regulatory Affairs, CenturyLink (August 8, 2012) (LOI).
7 See Letter from Nancy L. Shelledy, Vice President/Assistant General Counsel, CenturyLink, to the attention of
Gary Schonman, Special Counsel, Investigations & Hearings Division, Enforcement Bureau (September 17, 2012).
CenturyLink also provided supplemental information to the Bureau on November 5, 2012. See Letter from Nancy
L. Shelledy, Vice President/Assistant General Counsel, CenturyLink, to the attention of Gary Schonman, Special
Counsel, Investigations & Hearings Division, Enforcement Bureau (November 5, 2012).
4

Federal Communications Commission

DA 13-1070
take any action on its own motion against CenturyLink with respect to CenturyLink’s basic qualifications,
including its character qualifications, to be a Commission licensee or to hold Commission licenses or
authorizations.
12.

Compliance Officer

. Within thirty (30) calendar days after the Effective Date,
CenturyLink shall designate a senior corporate manager with the requisite corporate and organizational
authority to serve as Compliance Officer and to discharge the duties set forth below. The Compliance
Officer shall be responsible for developing, implementing, and administering the Compliance Plan and
ensuring that CenturyLink complies with the terms and conditions of the Compliance Plan and this
Consent Decree. In addition to the general knowledge of the Communications Laws necessary to
discharge his/her duties under this Consent Decree, the Compliance Officer shall have specific knowledge
of all terms, conditions, and commitments in Appendix C, Paragraphs II.A and II.B of the Merger Order.
13.

Compliance Plan

. For purposes of settling the matters set forth herein, CenturyLink
agrees that it shall within sixty (60) calendar days after the Effective Date, develop and implement a
Compliance Plan that, consistent with its obligation to ensure compliance with the Communications
Laws, is designed to ensure future compliance with the terms and conditions of this Consent Decree.
With respect to Appendix C, Paragraphs II.A and II.B, CenturyLink shall implement the following
procedures:
(a)

Operating Procedures

. Within sixty (60) calendar days after the Effective Date,
CenturyLink shall establish revised Operating Procedures that all Covered
Employees shall follow to help ensure CenturyLink’s compliance with Appendix C,
Paragraphs II.A and II.B of the Merger Order. CenturyLink’s Operating Procedures
shall include internal procedures and policies specifically designed to ensure that
CenturyLink complies with its commitments under Appendix C, Paragraphs II.A and
II.B of the Merger Order. CenturyLink also shall develop a Compliance Checklist
that describes the steps that a Covered Employee must follow to ensure compliance
with all commitments in Appendix C, Paragraphs II.A and II.B of the Merger Order.
(b)

Compliance Manual

. Within sixty (60) calendar days after the Effective Date, the
Compliance Officer shall develop and distribute a Compliance Manual to all Covered
Employees. The Compliance Manual shall explain all commitments under Appendix
C, Paragraphs II.A and II.B of the Merger Order and set forth the Operating
Procedures that Covered Employees shall follow to help ensure CenturyLink’s
compliance with its commitments under Appendix C, Paragraphs II.A and II.B of the
Merger Order. CenturyLink shall periodically review and revise the Compliance
Manual as necessary to ensure that the information set forth therein remains current
and complete. CenturyLink shall distribute any revisions to the Compliance Manual
promptly to all Covered Employees.
(c)

Compliance Training Program

. CenturyLink shall establish and implement a
Compliance Training Program on compliance with all commitments in Appendix C,
Paragraphs II.A and II.B of the Merger Order. As part of the Compliance Training
Program, Covered Employees shall be advised and instructed on the information that
CenturyLink is obligated to provide to the public relating to its commitments under
Appendix C, Paragraphs II.A and II.B of the Merger Order. All Covered Employees
shall be trained pursuant to the Compliance Training Program within ninety (90)
calendar days after the Effective Date. Any person who becomes a Covered
Employee at any time after the initial training shall be trained within sixty (60)
calendar days after the date such person becomes a Covered Employee. CenturyLink
5

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DA 13-1070
shall repeat the compliance training on an annual basis, and shall periodically review
and revise the Compliance Training Program as necessary to ensure that it remains
current and complete and to enhance its effectiveness.
14.

Reporting Noncompliance

. CenturyLink shall report any noncompliance with its
commitments under Appendix C, Paragraphs II.A and II.B of the Merger Order and with the terms and
conditions of this Consent Decree within fifteen (15) calendar days after discovery of such
noncompliance. Such reports shall include a detailed explanation of (i) each instance of noncompliance;
(ii) the steps that CenturyLink has taken or will take to remedy the noncompliance; (iii) the schedule on
which such remedial actions will be taken; and (iv) the steps that CenturyLink has taken or will take to
prevent the recurrence of such noncompliance. All reports of noncompliance shall be submitted to the
Chief, Investigations & Hearing Division, Enforcement Bureau, Federal Communications Commission,
Room 4-C330, 445 12th Street, S.W. Washington, D.C. 20554, with copies submitted electronically to
Theresa Z. Cavanaugh at Terry.Cavanaugh@fcc.gov and to Gary Schonman at Gary.Schonman@fcc.gov.
15.

Compliance Reports

. CenturyLink shall file a Compliance Report with the Commission
on or before October 15, 2013, October 15, 2014, October 15, 2015, and October 15, 2016.
(a) Each Compliance Report shall include a detailed description of CenturyLink’s efforts
during the relevant period to comply with the terms and conditions of this Consent
Decree, including but not limited to the percentage of Customer Service
Representatives that have been trained as described in paragraph 13(c), and with its
commitments under Appendix C, Paragraphs II.A and II.B of the Merger Order. In
addition, each Compliance Report shall include a certification by the Compliance
Officer, as an agent of and on behalf of CenturyLink, stating that the Compliance
Officer has personal knowledge that CenturyLink (i) has established and
implemented the Compliance Plan; (ii) has utilized the Operating Procedures since
the implementation of the Compliance Plan; and (iii) is not aware of any instances of
noncompliance with the terms and conditions of this Consent Decree, including the
reporting obligations set forth in paragraph 14 hereof.
(b) The Compliance Officer’s certification shall be accompanied by a statement
explaining the basis for such certification and shall comply with Section 1.16 of the
Rules8 and be subscribed to as true under penalty of perjury in substantially the form
set forth in Section 1.16.
(c) If the Compliance Officer cannot provide the requisite certification, the Compliance
Officer, as an agent of and on behalf of CenturyLink, shall provide the Commission
with a detailed explanation of the reason(s) why and describe fully (i) each instance
of noncompliance; (ii) the steps that CenturyLink has taken or will take to remedy
such noncompliance, including the schedule on which proposed remedial actions will
be taken; and (iii) the steps that CenturyLink has taken or will take to prevent the
recurrence of any such noncompliance, including the schedule on which such
preventive action will be taken.
(d) All Compliance Reports shall be submitted to the Chief, Investigations & Hearings
Division, Enforcement Bureau, Federal Communications Commission, Room 4-
C330, 445 12th Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20554, with a copy submitted

8 47 C.F.R. § 1.16.
6

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DA 13-1070
electronically to Theresa Z. Cavanaugh at Terry. Cavanaugh@fcc.gov and to Gary
Schonman at Gary.Schonman@fcc.gov.
16.

Termination Date

. Unless stated otherwise, the requirements set forth in paragraphs 12-
15 of this Consent Decree shall expire thirty-six (36) months after the Effective Date.
17.

Extension of Discounted Service and Equipment Programs

. CenturyLink agrees that
it shall extend by one year its obligations to offer the broadband internet service and equipment discounts
described in Appendix C, Paragraphs II.A and II.B of the Merger Order. Thus, CenturyLink agrees to
offer its Service Discount until October 1, 2017, for a total of six years (rather than until October 1, 2016,
for a total of five years). At any time during the six-year period, a qualifying customer (as that term is
defined in Appendix C, Paragraph II, of the Merger Order) may enroll in the discounted broadband
service plan, and he or she may choose a term of as little as one year, which may be extended at the
customer’s option on a month-to-month basis for as long as five years. Additionally, during the period of
up to five years (which could extend to October 1, 2022, rather than October 1, 2021, depending upon
when a qualifying customer becomes an enrolled customer, as that term is defined in Appendix C,
Paragraph II, of the Merger Order), CenturyLink agrees to offer enrolled customers the ability to obtain
one piece of computer equipment (such as a netbook) per household, pre-configured with operating
software and Internet-ready, and with customary warranty from the manufacturer when available, for no
more than $150, provided that the customer agrees to a two-year broadband services contract at the
discounted rate referenced in Appendix C, Paragraph II, of the Merger Order.
18.

Voluntary Contribution

. CenturyLink agrees that it will make a voluntary contribution
to the United States Treasury in the amount of two hundred and fifty thousand dollars ($250,000) within
thirty (30) calendar days after the Effective Date. CenturyLink shall also send electronic notification of
payment to Theresa Z. Cavanaugh at Terry.Cavanaugh@fcc.gov and to Gary Schonman at
Gary.Schonman@fcc.gov on the date said payment is made. The payment must be made by check or
similar instrument, wire transfer, or credit card and must include the NAL/Account Number and FRN
referenced above. Regardless of the form of payment, a completed FCC Form 159 (Remittance Advice)
must be submitted.9 When completing the FCC Form 159, enter the Account Number in block number
23A (call sign/other ID) and enter the letters “FORF” in block number 24A (payment type code). Below
are additional instructions regarding the form of payment:

Payment by check or money order must be made payable to the order of the Federal
Communications Commission. Such payments (along with the completed Form 159) must be
mailed to Federal Communications Commission, P.O. Box 979088, St. Louis, MO 63197-9000,
or sent via overnight mail to U.S. Bank – Government Lockbox #979088, SL-MO-C2-GL, 1005
Convention Plaza, St. Louis, MO 63101.

Payment by wire transfer must be made to ABA Number 021030004, receiving bank
TREAS/NYC, and Account Number 27000001. To complete the wire transfer and ensure
appropriate crediting of the wired funds, a completed Form 159 must be faxed to U.S. Bank at
(314) 418-4232 on the same business day the wire transfer is initiated.

Payment by credit card must be made by providing the required credit card information on FCC
Form 159 and signing and dating the Form 159 to authorize the credit card payment. The
completed Form 159 must then be mailed to Federal Communications Commission, P.O. Box
979088, St. Louis, MO 63197-9000, or sent via overnight mail to U.S. Bank – Government
Lockbox #979088, SL-MO-C2-GL, 1005 Convention Plaza, St. Louis, MO 63101.

9 An FCC Form 159 and detailed instructions for completing the form may be obtained at
http://www.fcc.gov/Forms/Form159/159.pdf.
7

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DA 13-1070
Questions regarding payment procedures should be addressed to Financial Operations Group Help Desk
by phone, 1-877-480-3201, or by e-mail, ARINQUIRIES@fcc.gov.
19.

Section 208 Complaints; Subsequent Investigations

. Nothing in this Consent Decree
shall prevent the Commission or its delegated authority from adjudicating complaints filed pursuant to
Section 208 of the Act against CenturyLink or its affiliates for alleged violations of the Act, or for any
other type of alleged misconduct, regardless of when such misconduct took place. The Commission’s
adjudication of any such complaints will be based solely on the record developed in that proceeding.
Except as expressly provided in this Consent Decree, this Consent Decree shall not prevent the
Commission from investigating new evidence of noncompliance by CenturyLink with the
Communications Laws.
20.

Waivers

. CenturyLink waives any and all rights it may have to seek administrative or
judicial reconsideration, review, appeal, or stay, or to otherwise challenge or contest the validity of this
Consent Decree and the Adopting Order, provided the Bureau issues an Adopting Order as defined
herein. CenturyLink shall retain the right to challenge Commission interpretation of the Consent Decree
or any terms contained herein. If either Party (or the United States on behalf of the Commission) brings a
judicial action to enforce the terms of the Adopting Order, neither CenturyLink nor the Commission shall
contest the validity of the Consent Decree or of the Adopting Order, and CenturyLink shall waive any
statutory right to a trial de novo. CenturyLink hereby agrees to waive any claims it may have under the
Equal Access to Justice Act10 relating to the matters addressed in this Consent Decree.
21.

Invalidity

. In the event that this Consent Decree in its entirety is rendered invalid by any
court of competent jurisdiction, it shall become null and void and may not be used in any manner in any
legal proceeding.
22.

Subsequent Rule or Order

. The Parties agree that if any provision of the Consent
Decree conflicts with any subsequent Rule or order adopted by the Commission (except an order
specifically intended to revise the terms of this Consent Decree to which CenturyLink does not expressly
consent) that provision will be superseded by such Rule or Commission order.
23.

Successors and Assigns

. CenturyLink agrees that the provisions of this Consent Decree
shall be binding on its successors, assigns, and transferees.
24.

Final Settlement

. The Parties agree and acknowledge that this Consent Decree shall
constitute a final settlement between the Parties with respect to the Investigation. The Parties further
agree that this Consent Decree does not constitute either an adjudication on the merits or a factual or legal
finding or determination regarding any compliance or noncompliance with the Communications Laws.
25.

Modifications

. This Consent Decree cannot be modified without the advance written
consent of both Parties.
26.

Paragraph Headings

. The headings of the Paragraphs in this Consent Decree are
inserted for convenience only and are not intended to affect the meaning or interpretation of this Consent
Decree.
27.

Authorized Representative

. The individual signing this Consent Decree on behalf of
CenturyLink represents and warrants that she is authorized by CenturyLink to execute this Consent

10 Equal Access to Justice Act, Pub L. No. 96-481, 94 Stat. 2325 (1980) (codified at 5 U.S.C. § 504); see also
47 C.F.R. §§ 1.1501-1.1530.
8

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DA 13-1070
Decree and to bind CenturyLink to the obligations set forth herein. The FCC signatory represents that she
is signing this Consent Decree in her official capacity and that she is authorized to execute this Consent
Decree.
28.

Counterparts

. This Consent Decree may be signed in any number of counterparts
(including by facsimile), each of which, when executed and delivered, shall be an original, and all of
which counterparts together shall constitute one and the same fully executed instrument.
________________________________
P. Michele Ellison
Chief
Enforcement Bureau
________________________________
Date
________________________________
Shirish Lal
Senior Vice President-Marketing
CenturyLink, Inc.
______________________________
Date
9

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