Definitions for "Competitive Local Exchange Carrier"
Keywords:  clec, incumbent, ilec, lec, lmds
Created by the Telecommunications Act of 1996, a CLEC is a service provider that is in direct competition with an incumbent service provider. CLEC is often used as a general term for any competitor, but the term actually has legal implications. To become a CLEC, a service provider must be granted "CLEC status" by a state's Public Utilities Commission. In exchange for the time and money spent to gain CLEC status, the CLEC is entitled to co-locate its equipment in the incumbent's central office, which saves the CLEC considerable expense.
A local telephone company that competes with an Incumbent Local Exchange Carrier (ILEC).
A local exchange carrier (local telephone company) that competes outside its traditional operating territory or a "new" telephone company that competes for service in the same territory as an existing local exchange carrier using access to its wireline infrastructure.