Lerman Senter’s experience in international satellite communications regulation and policy stretches back to the beginnings of private-sector satellite networks and forward to the very latest in satellite technologies, configurations, and applications. Ever since our attorneys helped negotiate and license the first privately-owned international satellite system and provided legislative and agency lobbying efforts that led to the privatization of Intelsat, Lerman Senter has represented companies at the forefront of the satellite industry.

Today, Lerman Senter’s clients continue to redefine the possibilities of satellites worldwide. From geostationary fixed and mobile services to low earth orbit systems providing direct-to-device emergency communications, from cutting-edge cubesats and multi-satellite constellations to pioneering transmission equipment, we help companies—often start-ups—obtain the policy changes, service rules, and facility authorizations they need to reach their highest goals. We welcome you to contact us for more information about our Satellite practice.

Lerman Senter attorneys provide a wide range of satellite-related services, including:

  • Participating in licensing and policymaking proceedings before the FCC
  • Advising on regulatory compliance and enforcement matters
  • Counseling on FCC regulatory aspects of mergers and acquisitions, including those involving significant foreign investment in U.S. licensees, which entail transfer or assignment of satellite space and earth station licenses and other Title III authorizations, experimental licenses, and/or equipment authorizations
  • Advising on the development and achievement of U.S. policy objectives on international radiofrequency spectrum management and use issues before the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and associated regional intergovernmental organizations
  • Representing manufacturers and other companies seeking experimental authority to test innovative transmission equipment

Representative Matters

  • Guided the legal, regulatory, and policy aspects of low and medium earth orbit satellite technologies that are now being used to provide broadband, voice, and other data services, including Earth observation, Internet of Things, and direct-to-device applications
  • Regularly help clients manage multi-satellite constellations, including assistance with ground infrastructure licensing, applications for replacement satellites, addressing orbital debris mitigation issues, and the reflagging and temporary use of satellites in foreign orbital slots
  • Assisted a start-up company in developing the regulatory strategy and application materials required to secure one of the first “non-geostationary network authorizations under the FCC’s new “smallsat” rules and reduced-cost fee structure
  • Helped obtain blanket earth station licenses and the adoption of new service rules allowing the use of remote terminals on aircraft and ships to provide mobile connectivity to passengers and crew
  • Advised clients on restrictions on satellite operator access to federal broadband subsidies
  • Represented a large number of broadcasters and other earth station owners as the FCC repurposes satellite spectrum for terrestrial use
  • Obtained a blanket earth station authorization covering more than 140 receive locations supporting a government contract for satellite delivery of advanced weather information to National Weather Service locations throughout the country

Key Clients

Anuvu (formerly Global Eagle Entertainment), Comtech TCS, Encompass Digital Media, Globalstar, Kinéis, Ligado Networks, Paramount Global