Supreme Court Punts On Whether FCC's Interpretation Of The TCPA Binds Federal Courts [tele...

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by Sieun J. Lee, David M. Poell, Paul A. Werner and Shannon
S. Petersen

At the end of the Supreme Court's most recent term, the Court released
its long-awaited ruling in PDR Network, LLC v. Carlton & Harris
Chiropractic, Inc., 139 S. Ct. 2051 (June 20, 2019) - a case that
could have carried far-reaching ramifications for Telephone Consumer
Protection Act ("TCPA") litigation nationwide. The Supreme Court
granted review to consider whether the Administrative Orders Review
Act (also known as the Hobbs Act), 28 U.S.C. ยง 2342(1), requires
district courts to accept the FCC's legal interpretation of the
statutory term "unsolicited advertisement" under the TCPA.

A unanimous Supreme Court vacated the decision of the Fourth Circuit
that district courts must defer to agency interpretation of statutes
they administer, but dodged the merits by remanding the case to
consider two "preliminary issues." However, concurring in the judgment
only, four Justices opined that district courts are not strictly bound
by the FCC's interpretations of the TCPA.

Bill Horne
(Remove QRM from my email address to write to me directly)

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