SNR Wireless LicenseCo, LLC v. FCC, No. 15-1330 (D.C. Cir. 2017)Annotate this Case
After the FCC denied SNR and Northstar's application to use bidding credits to purchase wireless spectrum licenses, SNR and Northstar bought some of the licenses at full price and relinquished the rest to the FCC. The FCC fined the petitioners hundreds of millions of dollars for failing to comply with the auction terms that required all bidders to purchase the licenses they won. The DC Circuit held that the FCC reasonably determined that DISH exercised de facto control over SNR and Northstar's businesses; but the FCC did not give SNR and Northstar adequate notice that, if their relationships with DISH cost them their bidding credits, the FCC would also deny them an opportunity to cure. Accordingly, the court remanded for the FCC to give petitioners an opportunity to seek to negotiate a cure for the de facto control the FCC found that DISH exercised over them.