General Business Antitrust & Trade Regulation Civil Procedure

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Antitrust Matters - November 2014 (Global)

EDITORIAL - Sitting at my desk in Washington, DC, I imagine myself being a business executive in Europe or Asia, trying to make sense of news reports that I regularly hear about United States courts and enforcement...more

Summary Judgment Affirmed by Sixth Circuit in Broker Commission Price-Fixing Litigation

On November 13, 2014, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the dismissal of price-fixing claims against two home brokerage service firms in Kentucky, McMahon Co. and HomeService of America, Inc. Hyland, et al. v....more

Seventh Circuit hears oral argument on Motorola Mobility v. AU Optronics

On November 12, 2014, the parties in Motorola Mobility v. AU Optronics reargued their case to a three judge panel of the Seventh Circuit – the same panel that ruled on the case earlier this year. The United States Department...more

Ask the Experts About Bad Faith; Just Be Careful How You Do It

In bad faith cases, juries must often decide if the way an insurer processed a claim lacked a “reasonable” basis. Courts have consistently held that experts can help—by explaining how a claim is supposed to be handled. The...more

What’s Next for In re: Nexium: Defendants’ Motions for Directed Verdicts Likely to Turn on Sufficiency of Expert Testimony

As we previously reported, the In re: Nexium trial is the first pay-for-delay trial in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Federal Trade Commission v. Actavis decision. But if the Nexium defendants have it their way, plaintiffs’...more

Five Million Dollar Penalty is Stark Reminder About "Gun Jumping"

On November 7, 2014, the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice ("DOJ") announced that it had imposed a civil penalty of $3.8M and disgorgement of $1.15M in profits on Flakeboard America Limited (and its parent...more

EU Issues Cartel Damages Directive

The directive eases the way for the private enforcement of competition laws in Europe. On November 10, the European Council adopted a directive designed to make it easier for injured parties to pursue damages claims in...more

District Court Weighs in on Level of Integration Required to Shield Health Care Collaborations from Section 1 Scrutiny

In Medical Center at Elizabeth Place v. Premier Health Partners et. al, Case No. 12-cv-26 (S.D. Oh. Oct. 20, 2014), the Southern District of Ohio held that previously-competing health care systems who join together in a...more

Motorola Oral Arguments Today – Will the Seventh Circuit Revise Its Interpretation of the FTAIA, and If so, How?

Today the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals hears oral argument from the parties and amicus curiae the United States concerning the reach of the Foreign Trade Antitrust Improvements Act (“FTAIA”), 15 U.S.C. § 6a, in Motorola...more

European Court of Justice Underlines Importance of Non-Discrimination Principle in EU Cartel Fines

EU High Court reduces cartel fine by 30 percent on appeal and stresses need for timely resolution of cases by the General Court. Summary - On 12 November 2014, the Court of Justice of the European Union (ECJ)...more

Ohio District Court Deems Hospital Alliance a Single Entity Incapable of Conspiring Under the Antitrust Laws

On October 21, 2014, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio granted Defendants’ motion for summary judgment, holding that Premier Health Partners (“Premier”) and its affiliate hospitals, Atrium Health...more

District Court Reluctantly Allows Tying Claims Against Oracle to Go Forward

Last Friday, Magistrate Judge Paul S. Grewal of the Northern District of California denied a motion by Oracle to dismiss three counterclaims based on a tying theory in Oracle America, Inc. v. Terix Computer Co. In doing so,...more

EU Antitrust Damages Directive: Opening the Floodgates to Claims or a Damp Squib?

The Council and European Parliament have finally adopted a Directive on rules governing actions for damages under national law for infringements of competition rules (the "Directive"). EU Member States have two years to...more

"EU Council of Ministers Adopts Directive on Rules Governing Private Antitrust Damage Actions"

On 10 November 2014, the Council of Ministers of the European Union adopted the long-awaited directive on rules governing private antitrust damage actions (Damages Directive or Directive). Although the text still needs to be...more

Developments in the Capacitor Cartel Litigation: Class Counsel Appointed and the Antitrust Division Intervenes

In July, we wrote about two putative class action lawsuits alleging that Panasonic, Samsung, and other electronics manufacturers had formed a cartel to boost prices of certain electronic capacitors. Since then, the cases have...more

Agricultural Cooperative Antitrust Litigation Continues to Mushroom

Pennsylvania District Court certifies five year ruling for interlocutory appeal, that mushroom cooperative is not immune from antitrust claims based upon “advice of counsel” argument. In Re Mushroom Direct Purchaser...more

Nexium District Court Takes Pioneering Approach to Preliminary Jury Charge

How does a court explain the complicated area of law at the intersection of patent settlements and antitrust law to a group of lay-jurors in the wake of Actavis? The district court’s approach to preliminary jury instructions...more

Licensing Boards Face Antitrust Laws

States rely heavily on licensing boards to “police” various professions and industries. In the past, these boards have been immune from antitrust claims. But a significant case is about to impact state licensing boards...more

Civil Antitrust Attorneys Receive Wire-Tap Evidence

The Canada Supreme Court ruled earlier this month that civil antitrust plaintiffs may receive wire-tap evidence obtained in the criminal investigation into an alleged price-fixing scheme by several large gas companies. During...more

Mushroom Court Ruling Sprouts Controversy on Whether Reliance on Lawyer Advice Maintains Affirmative Defense to Antitrust Claims

A federal district court recently ruled that claims of “good faith reliance on counsel” were not sufficient to maintain a Capper-Volstead affirmative defense to the antitrust laws – a result that may soon collide with rulings...more

Second Circuit Aluminum Warehousing Appeal Halted Until SCOTUS Weighs In

On October 23, 2014, the Second Circuit agreed to hold an appeal in abeyance until the U.S. Supreme Court rules on an issue of appellate procedure in Gelboim v. Bank of America Corp. (formerly known as In re LIBOR-Based...more

Legal FAQ: Section 337 Investigations Before the International Trade Commission

What types of intellectual property claims can be brought before the International Trade Commission? - The U.S. International Trade Commission (“ITC”) investigates claims of unfair competition under Section 337 of the...more

Hong Kong Competition Commission Publishes Draft Guidelines - a key step toward bringing the Competition Ordinance into full force

The Hong Kong Competition Commission (the "Commission") has published a set of draft guidelines (the "Guidelines") on 9 October 2014 for public consultation. These guidelines, upon finalization, will be submitted to the...more

Mushroom Growers Denied Capper-Volstead Antitrust Immunity

On October 14, 2014, the Eastern District of Pennsylvania denied a motion for reconsideration brought by members and affiliates of the former Eastern Mushroom Marketing Cooperative (EMMC). In re Mushroom Direct Purchaser...more

Correlation Is Not Causation: Class Certification Denied Because Experts’ Methodologies Fail To Show Predominate Antitrust Injury...

A California federal district court denied certification of two nationwide classes, each asserting a price-fixing conspiracy for optical disk drives (“ODD”), because the plaintiffs’ experts failed to provide a viable...more

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