Univision has sued Charter Communications in a dispute over programming fees. The case highlights increased tension between television programmers and distributors as pay-TV subscribers drop.
The lawsuit, filed in New York State Court Friday, comes after Charter just acquired Time Warner Cable, now the second-largest pay-TV company in the U.S. after Comcast.
Charter believes it’s entitled to pay lower programming rates under a long-term contract with TWC, reports AdAge.
The combined Charter-TWC has more leverage now when negotiating fees with programmers to carry their channels.
Univision is the largest Spanish-language broadcaster in the U.S.; it accused Charter of breach of contract by using the acquisition to impose fees that are “dramatically below” current markets prices for its content, the company said in a statement.
The complaint comes as Univision is preparing for an Initial Public Offering in the second half of the year (see our other story.)