Local Access and Transport Area (LATA)

A geographical area within which a divested Bell Operating Company (BOC) is permitted to offer exchange telecommunications and exchange access services, under the terms of the Modification of Final Judgment (MFJ). One or more local telephone companies are referred to as Local Exhange Carriers (see LECs).

A connection between two local exchanges within the LATA is referred to as intraLATA. A connection between a carrier in one LATA to a carrier in another LATA is referred to as interLATA. InterLATA is long-distance service. The current rules for permitting a company to provide intraLATA or interLATA service (or both) are based on the Telecommunications Act of 1996.

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