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Injunction vs. CPUC's Zero Co-Pay Rule Is Reversed by 9th Circuit

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, in a Tuesday decision (docket 21-15969), reversed and remanded the district court’s injunction that enjoined the California Public Utility Commission from enforcing its zero co-pay rule on two tiers of affordable wireless service…

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for service providers participating in the California LifeLine program. The CPUC’s zero co-pay requirement for certain affordable plans isn't rate regulation as preempted by the Communications Act because participation in LifeLine “is voluntary and service providers remain free to opt out and charge whatever rates they deem appropriate,” said the court. The CPUC didn't comment, nor did the National Lifeline Association, which sued the CPUC to block the zero co-pay rule.