Top 3 Legal Concerns for Agents

at Recent Channel Partners Conference

Telecom Lawyer Newsletter - May 2011

By Ben Bronston, Telecom Lawyer


I had the honor of being selected as the telecom legal subject matter expert (SME) for a recent Channel Partners Conference and Expo.  I moderated a roundtable discussion about telecom contracts at the Peer-to-Peer Networking Mixer.  Most of the participants wanted to discuss the typical concerns (evergreen, termination, non-solicitation, etc.).  However, there were 3 other interesting issues which stick out in my mind:


  1. One participant was a master agent who warned about the dangers of signing an agreement without the assistance of an experienced telecom lawyer.  He said his company had been burned by a CLEC who took advantage of the one-sided language in their agreement.  He highly recommended using an experienced telecom lawyer in the contract negotiation process and called it "money well spent".  As you might expect, I completely agree with his position!

  2. An independent agent was concerned about the possibility of being labeled an employee of a carrier he represented for income tax and payroll tax purposes. He said the state where he lives is cracking down on independent sales agents from different industries - the state is claiming they are really employees rather than independent contractors.  I don't think this is a very big issue in our industry, particularly because most independent agents seem to represent more than one carrier or master agent, but it's certainly something about which independent agents should be careful.

  3. A small agent who is new to the business expressed frustration about the affordability of obtaining legal assistance from an experienced telecom lawyer.  He wondered if there was an association of small agents who pooled their resources together to assist each other with contracts.  I understand this agent's concern, but the good news is that I can help any agent (large or small) in an affordable manner. In addition, I can help any small agent work wit master agents who may have more clout and financial resources to negotiate favorable contract terms with carriers.


Need to keep current on legal issues affecting telecom agents, channel partners and their carrier suppliers? Connect with me on LinkedIn. 

Want to learn more about telecom agent agreements, cloud agreements and other telecom contracts and issues?  Join my discussion group on LinkedIn which has over 1,100 members and is growing rapidly. 

If you have a telecom contract that you need an experienced telecom lawyer to review or need help with any other telecom legal issue, call me at 888-469-0579


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Ben Bronston


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Practice Areas:

I provide a broad range of legal services with regard to specialized telecommunications contracts, regulatory and compliance matters, commercial/transactional matters, litigation and other specialized services. 


Sample Clients:

I represent a wide variety of clients, including agents, master agents, cloud service providers, IP telephony or VoIP providers, wireless service providers, facilities-based long distance carriers and resellers, prepaid companies, competitive local exchange carriers and trade associations.



Ben Bronston - Telecom Lawyer - Copyright 2011


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