MARK SCHNEIDER is senior counsel in Sidley’s Telecom and Internet Competition group. He practices before the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and federal and state courts in the broadcast, media, common carrier, international and wireless fields. Mark spent several years at the FCC. From September 1999 until June 2001, he served as Senior Legal Advisor to FCC Commissioner Susan Ness. From June 2001 until January 2002, he served as Associate General Counsel of the FCC.
Mark represents television and radio stations, wireless operators, telephone companies, equipment manufacturers, private radio operators and lending institutions regarding FCC regulations and other communications law issues. His practice includes litigation, counseling clients, and corporate and transactional matters, as well as preparation and prosecution of applications and other requests before the FCC. He represents media and wireless companies in structuring transactions, in prosecuting applications for FCC authorizations, and in litigation matters before the FCC and courts. He advises lending and investment institutions regarding the impact of FCC regulations, and counsels equipment manufacturers on the lawfulness of manufacture and sale of devices utilizing radio frequency.
Examples of Mark’s engagements include:
- Defended multiple cases attacking basic qualifications of broadcast and wireless companies to be FCC licensees;
- Advised on structures for ownership of media and telephone companies, given requirements of FCC media and foreign ownership rules;
- Drafted and filed pleadings in rulemaking proceedings and litigation over adoption and application of media ownership rules and granting of waivers;
- Advised on applications of Parts 2, 15 of FCC’s rules to manufacturing, marketing and distribution of equipment and radiofrequency devices;
- Represented lenders, investors, buyers and sellers in transactions for purchase, sale and refinancing of FCC-licensed broadcast and wireless businesses;
- Advised on process for government approvals for construction and operation of undersea cables;
- Advised on FCC spectrum licensing requirements for manufacturers and utilities, including transfer and control and assignment of FCC authorizations;
- Advised content providers on FCC rules governing broadcast content, and participated in litigation over FCC content regulation of media companies, including FCC enforcement proceedings on indecency regulations, sponsorship identification requirements and political broadcasting rules; and
- Litigated cases for wireless service providers on spectrum licensing rules.
Mark is consistently ranked among the nation’s top communications lawyers by Chambers USA, Who’s Who, The Legal 500 United States, U.S. News/Best Lawyers and Super Lawyers. In Chambers USA, Mark has been cited for his work as a litigator, and is extolled for his “intellect, his judgment, and the way he carries himself.” Mark is applauded for his deep understanding of regulatory issues and frequently appears before the FCC. In Best Lawyers, Mark has been praised as having “an excellent grasp of substance and nuance. He has practical insight into what can be accomplished and the best way to do so. Mark has big picture understanding.” Mark has been listed as a Best Lawyer in the Administrative/Regulatory Law and Communications Law categories every year since 2012.
In 2014, Mark received the Federal Communications Bar Association’s Distinguished Service Award.