Brian A. McAleenan has a broad litigation and regulatory practice that includes extensive telecommunications experience. Mr. McAleenan has represented a major telecommunications carrier for nearly 20 years in a wide range of matters concerning the Communications Act and the 1996 Telecommunications Act reforms. He has litigated over 15 access charge and other inter-carrier compensation disputes before federal courts and the Federal Communications Commission. Mr. McAleenan has substantial experience with numerous telecommunications regulatory issues, including: access arbitrage; VoIP; transport mileage; calling cards; access charge reform; direct connections; billing mechanisms and agents; two-stage calling; the rural CLEC exemption; and centralized equal access arrangements.
Mr. McAleenan has defended and examined industry experts regarding network architecture, call flow, call records, tariff interpretation and terms of art, Universal Service, rate structure, switching functions, cost of service, billing practices and damages. In addition, he defended a major wireless carrier in a multi-billion dollar price-fixing case concerning text message pricing. Mr. McAleenan has also advised an electric utility on state and federal telecommunications regulation issues, including proper classification of offerings as telecommunications or enhanced service, certification requirements and preemption.
Mr. McAleenan is a 1998 magna cum laude graduate of the University of Illinois College of Law, where he was a member of the Law Review and elected to the Order of the Coif, and a graduate, with honors, of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Areas of Practice
Telecommunications and Technology
Fiduciary Duty and M&A
Lead trial counsel for AT&T in case presenting novel issues of whether the rural CLEC exemption is available to local carriers that (i) have both incumbent and CLEC operations, and/or (ii) offer, but do not provide, service in urban areas.
Lead counsel for AT&T before Federal Communications Commission in dispute concerning local telephone carrier’s liability to refund amounts paid to a billing agent engaged in fraud; final Order pending.
Represented AT&T in federal court and the Federal Communications Commission in access arbitrage dispute concerning whether conference call providers were “end users” under governing tariffs and regulations, as well as the obligation of competitive carriers to provide direct connections to long distance carriers, that settled on terms the client found favorable.
Represented AT&T in transport charge dispute that resulted in victory before the Federal Communications Commission with a seminal Order barring “mileage pumping” as an unreasonable practice.
Lead trial counsel for AT&T in dispute concerning both two-stage calling, on which the carrier prevailed on summary judgment, and proper application of the VoIP-symmetry rule, which settled favorably on the eve of trial.
- U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
- Trial Bar of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
- U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
- University of Illinois College of Law, J.D., magna cum laude, 1998
- Law Review
- Order of the Coif
- University of Illinois, B.S., with honors, 1995
Honors and Awards
- Listed in Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, 2023
- Duane Morris LLP
- Partner, 2020-present
- Sidley Austin LLP
- Partner, 2007-2020
- Associate, 1998-2007