Bruce D. Sokler

Bruce D. Sokler

Mintz Levin

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Supreme Court Upholds Brulotte Rule Prohibiting Post-Expiration Patent Royalties

On June 22, 2015, the Supreme Court issued its decision in Kimble v. Marvel Entertainment, LLC, upholding the rule, first announced in Brulotte v. Thys Co., 379 U. S. 29 (1964), that an agreement allowing a patent owner to...more

6/24/2015 - Brulotte Kimble v Marvel Enterprises Law-of-the-Case Marvel Comics Patent Royalties Patent Terms Patents Royalties SCOTUS Stare Decisis

Camels and Dogs, Oh My! Defendant Documents Doom Health Provider Trade Association and Insurers’ Motion to Dismiss Antitrust Suit

Over two and one-half years after it was initially filed, an antitrust suit brought by plaintiff ambulatory surgery centers (“ASCs”) against health insurers and a trade association of competing health systems is finally...more

6/23/2015 - Anti-Competitive Health Care Providers Health Insurance Insurance Industry Restraint of Trade Sherman Act

Harm to Potential Competition Triggers FTC Merger Challenge

The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC” or “Commission”) filed an administrative complaint last week challenging the proposed $1.9 billion merger of Steris Corporation (“Steris”) and Synergy Health plc (“Synergy”), charging that...more

6/5/2015 - Corporate Counsel FTC Hart-Scott-Rodino Act Health Care Providers Horizontal Mergers Inversion Medical Devices Mergers

Second Circuit Holds a Hard Switch Between Drugs Is an Unlawful Product Hop Under Section 2

On May 22, 2015, in a much-watched case, the Second Circuit upheld a preliminary injunction against Actavis PLC and its wholly owned subsidiary, Forest Laboratories, LLC (collectively “Actavis” or “Forest”), finding that...more

6/5/2015 - Actavis Inc. Anticompetitive Behavior Generic Drugs Pharmaceutical Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Preliminary Injunctions Product Hopping Section 2 Sherman Act

A Split FTC Accepts Fix-It-First Divestiture Remedy for Cigarette Merger

The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) accepted on Tuesday from Reynolds American Inc. (“Reynolds”) and Lorillard Inc. (“Lorillard”), subject to final approval, a Consent Order settling the agency’s significant competitive...more

5/30/2015 - Acquisitions Antitrust Division Antitrust Investigations Consent Order Divestiture FTC FTCA Mergers Proposal for Settlement RJ Reynolds The Clayton Act Tobacco

FTC Flushes McWane in a Big Eleventh Circuit Exclusive Dealing Win

The situations where exclusive dealing policies, explicit or tied to an aggressive discounting program, cross the line under the rule-of-reason remain far from clear. Because it involved appellate review of a Federal Trade...more

4/23/2015 - Appeals Distributors Exclusive Dealing Agreements FTC Manufacturers Monopolization

FTC Settles Radioactive Allegations Against Cardinal Health with a Near Record-Breaking Disgorgement Agreement

In a 3-2 decision, as part of its aggressive antitrust enforcement in health care industries, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC or the Commission) announced that Cardinal Health, Inc. (Cardinal) agreed to pay $26.8 million to...more

4/22/2015 - Antitrust Litigation Cardinal Health Disgorgement Enforcement Actions FTC Healthcare Healthcare Providers Pharmaceutical Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Price Manipulation

Hospital Wins First Round Against Largest Rival in Antitrust Suit Alleging Illegal Exclusive Dealing Agreements with Insurers

The waves of change affecting health care providers include reimbursement and funding developments, the impact of the Affordable Care Act, technological and medical advances, provider network design transformations imposed by...more

3/31/2015 - Affordable Care Act Antitrust Litigation Antitrust Provisions Exclusive Dealing Agreements FTC Health Care Providers Health Insurance Healthcare Hospitals

Supreme Court to Hear Argument on March 31 Whether to Overrule Brulotte v. Thys, Co.

Fifty years ago, the Supreme Court held in Brulotte v. Thys Co., 379 U.S. 29 (1964) that a license agreement requiring royalty payments for use of a patented invention after expiration of the patent term is unlawful per se. ...more

3/26/2015 - Brulotte IP License Kimble v Marvel Enterprises License Agreements Marvel Comics Patents SCOTUS

FTC Looks to Accelerate Oncology Drug Growth by Requiring Novartis to Divest Two Protein Inhibitors in Its Clinical Development...

The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) on Monday completed its review of Novartis AG’s (“Novartis”) proposed $16 billion acquisition of GlaxoSmithKline’s (“GSK”) oncology drug portfolio with an announced consent decree that...more

3/2/2015 - Divestiture FTC GlaxoSmithKline Novartis Pharmaceutical Patents Prescription Drugs

No Active State Supervision, No Antitrust Immunity for North Carolina State Dental Board

On February 25, 2015, in a 6-3 decision authored by Justice Kennedy, the Supreme Court upheld the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) decision finding that the North Carolina Board of Dental Examiners (Board), although a state...more

2/27/2015 - Anti-Competitive Antitrust Litigation Dentists FTC Governmental Immunity Immunity NC Board of Dental Examiners v FTC SCOTUS State Action Immunity

DOJ Releases Electrifying New Guidance on Standard-Essential Patent Policy

The Department of Justice (the “Department” or “DOJ”) continued its multi-pronged defense of standards-setting organizations (SSOs) who adopt patent policies to prevent hold-up during licensing negotiations. Last week’s...more

2/12/2015 - DOJ FTC IEEE ITC New Guidance Patents RAND Standard Essential Patents USPTO

Ninth Circuit Affirms FTC’s Challenge to Hospital-Physician Group Merger, While Rejecting Efficiencies and Health Care Quality...

In a much anticipated appellate health care antitrust decision, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld a district court’s finding that a consummated hospital-physician group merger violated Section 7...more

2/12/2015 - Antitrust Litigation FTC Healthcare Hospital Mergers Hospitals Physicians St. Luke's The Clayton Act

Groundhog’s Day for Employers: The Same Mistakes Over and Over and Over…

I still consider Groundhog’s Day not only a great comedy, but also a great movie. Twenty-two years ago, the late Harold Ramis graced us with a tale about Phil Connors, a Pittsburgh TV weatherman, who finds himself repeating...more

2/12/2015 - Employer Liability Issues Exempt-Employees Unpaid Overtime Wage and Hour

FTC and DOJ to Host Second Public Workshop on Health Care Competition

Last March, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) began a public workshop series entitled, “Examining Health Care Competition.” On February 24 and 25, 2015, the FTC will physically host the...more

1/27/2015 - Affordable Care Act Antitrust Provisions Competition DOJ FTC Health Care Providers Healthcare Market Participants

FTC Announces Annual Revision to HSR Jurisdictional Thresholds

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced on January 15, 2015 increased jurisdictional thresholds for premerger notification filings under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976, as amended (the HSR Act)....more

1/16/2015 - FTC Hart-Scott-Rodino Act Premerger Notifications Threshhold Requirements

Tenth Circuit Affirms Class Certification and Price Fixing Verdict Against Dow Chemical

The Tenth Circuit recently affirmed both class certification and one of the largest verdicts issued in the U.S. this year, denying Dow Chemical Company’s (“Dow”) appeal in a price fixing case related to polyurethane products....more

10/7/2014 - Antitrust Litigation Class Action Class Certification Dow Chemical Price-Fixing

DOJ Antitrust Enforcers Take to the Bully Pulpit on Prosecuting Antitrust Crimes and Antitrust Compliance Programs

In recent years, antitrust criminal enforcement efforts have increased around the world. These efforts focus mainly on cartels — which the Supreme Court calls “the supreme evil of antitrust” — that conspire to fix prices, rig...more

9/15/2014 - Antitrust Litigation Compliance DOJ Enforcement Enforcement Actions

No Bones About It: Tenth Circuit Permits Narrowest Market Definition and Raises the Bar for an Entry Defense When Reinstating...

On August 5, 2014, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated claims of monopolization and attempted monopolization under Section 2 of the Sherman Act brought by a manufacturer of surgical bone mills against a competitor. ...more

8/12/2014 - Corporate Counsel

Antitrust and Health Care: An Update from the Federal Trade Commission

The interplay between the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs), and antitrust has been a matter of great moment for several years. It has been an issue in litigation such as the Federal Trade...more

6/26/2014 - ACOs Affordable Care Act Antitrust Litigation Antitrust Provisions FTC Healthcare Healthcare Reform St. Luke's

DOJ Revisits Music Royalty Consent Decrees

From cassette tapes to CDs to Pandora and Spotify, innovations in the music field over the past two decades have drastically changed how people access music. Songwriters, however, are paid according to a system that has been...more

6/7/2014 - Antitrust Division ASCAP BMI Consent Decrees Copyright Digital Assets DOJ Licensing Rights Music Industry Pandora Popular Public Performance Rights Publishing Copyrights Royalties Sound Recording Copyrights

Federal Trade Commission Extends In re Polygram’s “Inherently Suspect” Anticompetitive Analysis to Endorsements

The Federal Trade Commission’s (“FTC”) recent settlement with ski manufacturers Marker Volkl (International) GmbH (“Marker Volkl”) and Tecnica S.p.A. (“Tecnica”) continues to expand the scope of “inherently suspect” business...more

5/29/2014 - DOJ Enforcement Actions FTC Manufacturers Settlement Unfair or Deceptive Trade Practices

Antitrust Hospital Merger Policy Gets a Judicial Boost — Sixth Circuit Upholds FTC Decision Challenging Hospital Merger

In a highly anticipated decision, the federal antitrust agencies’ reinvigorated hospital merger enforcement efforts received a boost when, for the first time this century, an appellate court upheld a Federal Trade Commission...more

4/24/2014 - FTC Hospitals Mergers

Busting Brackets: District Court Rejects NCAA’s Summary Judgment Motion and Allows Student-Athletes’ Suit for Publicity...

Nearly five years into the lawsuit, a District Court denied defendant NCAA’s summary judgment motion, and ordered that the antitrust claims of current and former student-athletes denied compensation for the commercial use of...more

4/21/2014 - Antitrust Litigation Antitrust Provisions College Athletes NCAA Sherman Act

Is 4-3 the New 3-2? FTC Continues to Target Pharmaceutical Mergers

The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC” or “Commission”) has often stated that merger analysis requires more than a simplistic determination that high market concentration leads to anticompetitive effects. Still, the antitrust...more

4/17/2014 - Anti-Competitive Antitrust Litigation FTC Mergers Pharmaceutical

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