In addition to filing an FCC Form 175 application
, each applicant must submit an upfront payment, which is a refundable deposit toward the bids they plan to make in the auction. Prior to an FCC auction, each license being auctioned is assigned a specific number of bidding units, and the upfront payment is used to buy the right to bid on those bidding units.
An applicant does not need to submit an upfront payment for each license specified in its Form 175. Instead, the applicant must only submit an upfront payment that will purchase the maximum number of bidding units on which it will wish to bid (including any standing high bids) in any single round. For example, an applicant may list 20 licenses in its Form 175, but only plan to bid on six of those licenses in any one round. That applicant could then submit an upfront payment that covers the bidding units for those six licenses. For the convenience of applicants, the system has a built-in upfront payment calculator.
The number of bidding units purchased with the upfront payment defines a bidder's maximum bidding eligibility. The maximum bidding eligibility is the maximum amount of bidding units on which the applicant will be permitted to bid (including any standing high bids) in any single round of bidding.