Antitrust and Competition
Our Antitrust and Competition attorneys handle both civil and criminal antitrust cases, from multidistrict litigation and class actions to investigations by federal and state officials.
We also offer strategic guidance on circumventing class actions, securing antitrust clearances, reviewing compliance programs, and developing a cogent competition strategy that will hold up in court, at the negotiation table, or before an antitrust agency.
Chambers USA has named our Antitrust and Competition Group a leading practice every year since 2010, saying, “Their work is exceptional—they are very detail-oriented, proactive, and approachable and they provide fantastic quality of work.” Global Competition Review ranked us as one of the top antitrust and competition practices in the nation.
Our group has achieved success for clients through every possible means: through decisive advocacy in court and strategic thinking during appeals, via advantageous settlement, by prevailing on critical pretrial rulings, and by consistently gaining tactical advantages such as narrowing the scope of litigation and limiting potential damages.
We are involved in bet-the-company litigation and have obtained important victories in precedent-setting cases, including complicated multidistrict litigation with billions of dollars on the line. And when a company’s market share has been threatened by anticompetitive conduct, we have brought suit and obtained significant victories at trial and through multimillion-dollar settlements.
Class Action and Other Litigation
- Obtained successful settlement for 19 municipalities and municipal water authorities alleging that numerous chemical companies and individuals violated federal and state antitrust law by engaging in an anticompetitive conspiracy that increased the price of aluminum sulfate—known as alum—a chemical used to treat water.
- Secured the dismissal of a tying case against the landlord for Philadelphia International Airport, which was affirmed on appeal before the Third Circuit. In a precedential decision, the Third Circuit swept aside a broad-based attack to exclusive “pouring rights” agreements that are in place at airports and many sporting stadiums, colleges, and municipal buildings.
Criminal Antitrust Investigations and Violations
- Represented a global pharmaceutical company in the single largest criminal antitrust case being prosecuted in the United States. Litigation in the civil arena led to criminal indictments for price-fixing in generics, creating a vast criminal antitrust case. We obtained a favorable settlement on behalf of our client. The case was closely followed by the media and the outcome is important for the future of criminal antitrust enforcement, particularly in the pharmaceutical industry.
- Represent several individuals in connection with a criminal investigation by the DOJ Antitrust Division into an alleged agreement among suppliers of engineering services not to poach each other’s employee.
- Defended a client in the municipal bond industry in a federal collusion case where the individual was accused of bid-rigging. We secured a favorable outcome for the client at sentencing.
Antitrust Implications of Planned Business Combinations, Acquisitions, and Collaborations
- Advised a large utilities infrastructure company in connection with a now-completed billion-dollar transaction, including responding to informal FTC inquiries.
- Represented a manufacturer of molecular diagnostic tests in connection with a review by the FTC into a proposed merger with a manufacturer of cancer screening tests. After a period of intensive litigation, including extensive responses to second requests, the parties decided not to proceed with the transaction.
Antitrust Counseling on Compliance and Policy Issues
- Serve as antitrust counsel to an innovator of minerals for pharmaceutical and agricultural uses. Ballard Spahr provides ongoing counseling with respect to business transactions, including licensing and distribution agreements.
- Represent a national organization of utilities formed to develop voluntary environmental standards and guidance for the industry supply chain.