PHILADELPHIA - Settlements involving a reverse payment from a name-brand manufacturer to a generic challenger to delay the entry date for marketing a generic drug are subject to the rule-of-reason test and not the scope-of-the-patent test, the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled July 16, saying that a reverse payment is prima facie evidence of an unreasonable restraint of trade (Louisiana Wholesale Drug Co., Inc., et al., No. 10-2077; CVS Pharmacy Inc., et al., No. 2078; Walgreen Co., et al., No. 10-2079; Merck & Co., Inc., et al., No. 10-4571, 3rd Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 14527).
SALT LAKE CITY - Novell Inc. failed to present evidence sufficient for a jury to find that Microsoft Corp. unlawfully used its dominant position in the personal computing (PC) operating systems market to monopolize the word-processing and spreadsheet applications markets, a federal judge in Utah held July 16 in granting Microsoft's renewed motion for judgment as a matter of law (Novell, Inc. v. Microsoft Corp., No. 2:04-cv-01045, D. Utah). View related prior history, 2011 U.S. App. LEXIS 9062.
SAN DIEGO - A couple simply ignores appellate rulings applying a different standard in California unfair competition law (UCL) cases than they wish to have applied and fails to demonstrate that they can meet that standard, a state appeals court held in an opinion published July 16 (Robert W. Wilson, et al. v. Brian Hynek, et al., No. D057620, Calif. App., 4th Dist., Div. 1; 2012 Cal. App. LEXIS 809).
NEW YORK - Visa, MasterCard and a large number of banks on July 13 entered into a class settlement agreement with merchants who alleged that the defendants fixed the prices of interchange fees paid by merchants when customers use Visa and MasterCard credit cards, for $6.05 billion, an eight-month reduction in interchange fees worth $1.2 billion and modifications of the Visa and MasterCard rules (In re Payment Card Interchange Fee and Merchant Discount Antitrust Litigation (All Cases), No. 05-MD-1720, E.D. N.Y.). View related prior history, 2008 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 104439.
SAN FRANCISCO - Automated teller machine (ATM) cardholders lack standing to seek antitrust damages related to the fixed interchange fee that a card-issuing bank pays to the ATM owner and the foreign ATM fee that the cardholder pays to his bank when the cardholder uses ATMs owned by other institutions, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals affirmed July 12 (In re: ATM Fee Antitrust Litigation, Pamela Brennan, et al. v. Concord EFT, Inc., et al., No. 10-17354, 9th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 14265).
FORT WAYNE, Ind. - A broadcasting company plausibly alleged that a competitor entered into collusive agreements to aggregate exclusive network affiliations and engaged in denigrating commercial speech and predatory hiring with the purpose and effect of excluding competition in the television local spot advertising market in Fort Wayne, in violation of federal and state antitrust laws, a federal judge in Indiana ruled July 9 in denying the competitor's motion to dismiss (Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. v. Granite Broadcasting Corporation, et al., No. 1:11-CV-249, N.D. Ind.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 95024).
SAN FRANCISCO - Plaintiffs who sued a website owner for purchases made through a third party lack constitutional or statutory standing and the required reliance required by the California unfair competition law (UCL), a federal judge held June 9 (Sharon Gentes, et al. v. Trend Micro Inc., et al., No. 11-5574, N.D. Calif.). Subscribers may view the opinion available within the full article.
ATLANTA - Claims by pro se litigants alleging that Bank of America (BoA) illegally foreclosed on their home were dismissed July 3 by a Georgia federal judge for failure to state a claim (Martin Perales, et al. v. Bank of America, Home Loans N.A., No. 1:11-CV-3788-TWT, N.D. Ga.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 92139).
DENVER - Plaintiffs seeking quiet title to a property and asserting claims under the Colorado Consumer Protection Act have raised a sufficient immediate question regarding the true holder of the note to defeat a motion to dismiss, a Colorado federal judge ruled July 3 (George Trujillo, et ux., v. Bank of America, et al., No. 11-cv-02205-WJM-MEH, D. Colo.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 91961).
SAN FRANCISCO - Constitutional standing requirements, not the statutory requirements found in the California unfair competition law (UCL) Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code § 17200, apply to federal actions, and the lack of likely future injury bars consumers' actions against a service process company, a federal judge in California held July 3 (Ruby Nell Freeman v. ABC Legal Services Inc., et al., No. 11-3007 related to Nos. 11-3542, 11-3805, 11-3824, 11-5152, 12-0624, 12-0642, 12-0644, 12-0678, 12-1693, 12-1696, 12-1904, 12-1911, 12-1914, N.D. Calif.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 92404).
SAN FRANCISCO - A federal jury in California on July 3 awarded $87 million in damages to direct purchasers of film transistor-liquid crystal displays (TFT-LCD), finding that Toshiba Corp. engaged in a conspiracy with other manufacturers to raise and fix the price of TFT-LCD panels and certain products containing those panels imported into the United States for more than 10 years, resulting in overcharges to the purchasers, in violation of the Sherman Act 15 U.S.C.S. § 1 et seq..(In re: TFT-LCD (Flat Panel) Antitrust Litigation (All Direct Purchaser Actions), MDL No. 3:07-md-1827 SI, N.D. Calif.).
SAN FRANCISCO - A woman's "high-level statements" in her amended complaint against a bank fail to satisfy the pleading standard of the state's unfair competition law (UCL), a California judge held July 2 (Maria G. Sosa v. Bank of New York Mellon Trust, No. 12-00144, N.D Calif.). Subscribers may view the opinion available within the full article.
SAN FRANCISCO - Federal regulations governing fat content provide a basis for a woman's unfair competition law (UCL) action challenging the characterization of nutrition products as "healthy," and her claim that she "saw and relied" upon the representations on a website and in television advertising gives her adequate reliance on the alleged statements, a federal judge in California held June 28 (Claire Delacruz, et al. v. Cytosport Inc., No. 11-3532, N.D. Calif.). Subscribers may view the opinion available within the full article.
NEW YORK - The federal judge in New York overseeing the antitrust actions against Google Inc. and several publishers, including Penguin Group (USA) Inc., alleging that the defendants conspired to fix prices of electronic books, on June 27 denied Penguin's motion to compel arbitration of the federal antitrust claims of the plaintiffs who purchased their e-books through Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble (In re: Electronic Books Antitrust Litigation, (All Actions), Nos. 11 MD 2293, 11 Civ. 5576, 11 Civ. 5609, 11 Civ. 5621, 11 Civ. 5707, 11 Civ. 5750, 11 Civ. 5896, 11 Civ. 5898, 11 Civ. 5976, 11 Civ. 6019, 11 Civ. 6079, 11 Civ. 7507, 11 Civ. 7534, 11 Civ. 7323, 11 Civ. 8329, 11 Civ. 8608, 11 Civ. 9016, 11 Civ. 9014, 11 Civ. 9559, 11 Civ. 9560, 11 Civ. 9561, 11 Civ. 9562, 11 Civ. 9563, 11 Civ. 9564, 11 Civ. 9565, 11 Civ. 9566, 11 Civ. 9567, 12 Civ. 0476, S.D. N.Y.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 90190).
SEATTLE - Plaintiffs claiming that a phone manufacturer and weather app company failed to disclose tracking activities that drained battery life successfully allege injury and unfair and unlawful conduct under the California unfair competition law (UCL), a Washington judge held June 26 (Chad Goodman, John J. Olson and James Worsham v. HTC America Inc., et al., No. 11-1793, W.D. Wash.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 88496).
NEW YORK - The trial in the U.S. government's antitrust action against Google Inc. and several publishers for conspiring to fix prices of electronic books is set to begin June 3, 2013, according to a June 25 scheduling order filed by the federal judge in New York overseeing the litigation (In re: Electronic Books Antitrust Litigation $(All Actions$), No. 11 MD 2293, S.D. N.Y.; United States of America v. Apple, Inc., et al., No. 12 Civ. 2826, S.D. N.Y.; State of Texas, et al. v. Penguin Group $(USA$) Inc., et al., No. 12 Civ. 3394, S.D. N.Y.). Subscribers may view details of the scheduling order available within the full article.
LOS ANGELES - The federal judge in California overseeing the multidistrict antitrust litigation brought by direct purchasers of aftermarket automotive lighting products against manufacturers and distributors of the products lifted a stay on the civil litigation on June 21 after a related criminal trial was continued (In Re: Aftermarket Automotive Lighting Products Antitrust Litigation, No. 2:09-ml-02007, C.D. Calif.). Subscribers may view the minutes available within the full Mealey's article.
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on June 25 agreed to decide "(w)hether a district court may certify a class action without resolving whether the plaintiff class has introduced admissible evidence, including expert testimony, to show that the case is susceptible to awarding damages on a class-wide basis" (Comcast Corporation, et al. v. Caroline Behrend, et al. , No. 11-864, U.S. Sup.).
Follow this link to review a complimentary copy of the full Mealey's article.
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on June 25 granted the Federal Trade Commission's petition for a writ of certiorari seeking review of an 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling that although a merger between two Georgia hospitals would substantially lessen competition or tend to create a monopoly, the state-action doctrine immunized the conduct from a challenge by the FTC (Federal Trade Commission v. Phoebe Putney Health System, Inc., et al. No. 11-1160, U.S. Sup.).
Follow this link to review a complimentary copy of the complete Mealey's article.
NEW YORK - Research In Motion Corp.'s (RIM) rejection of a "reduced QWERTY" keyboard technology jointly developed by RIM and a patent holder was not anti-competitive conduct under Section 2 of the Sherman Act because the parties did not have an antecedent product, the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals affirmed June 21 in a summary order (Eatoni Ergonomics, Inc. v. Research in Motion Corp., et al., No. 11-5328-cv, 2nd Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 12641).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The federal judge in the District of Columbia overseeing the multidistrict litigation against railroad freight haulers on June 21 certified a class of direct purchasers who allege that the railroads violated antitrust laws by conspiring to charge excessive fuel surcharges (In re: Rail Freight Fuel Surcharge Antitrust Litigation (All Direct Purchaser Cases), No. 1:07-mc-00489, MDL No. 1869, D. D.C.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 86288).
NEW YORK - A lawyer who claimed that bond underwriters conspired to boycott a bond structure she developed and that the underwriters refused to deal lacked standing to assert violations of New York's Donnelly Act because she was a vendor, not a competitor, in the relevant market, and her injuries were too remote, a New York state judge ruled June 21 in dismissing the lawyer's action (Linda Grant Williams v. Citigroup, Inc., et al., No. 650481/2010, N.Y. Sup., N.Y. County). Subscribers may view the decision and order available within the full article.
CHICAGO - College students who alleged that the member institutions of the National Collegiate Athletic Association engaged in a horizontal price-fixing agreement related to scholarships for student-athletes in violation of Section 1 of the Sherman Act failed to identify a commercial market, the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled June 18 in affirming a trial court's dismissing the lawsuit with prejudice (Joseph Agnew, et al. v. National Collegiate Athletic Association, No. 11-3066, 7th Cir.; 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 12256).
PHILADELPHIA - A Pennsylvania federal judge on June 18 certified a limited class of indirect purchasers who allege that GlaxoSmithKline PLC (GSK) improperly inflated the cost of its Flonase nasal spray for two years by blocking generic versions of the drug from introduction into the market (In re: Flonase Antitrust Litigation, No. 08-CV-3301, E.D. Pa.). Subscribers may view the opinion available within the full article.
DETROIT - A Michigan federal judge on June 14 declined to dismiss an antitrust suit brought by one health insurer against another, saying the plaintiff's allegations met the threshold requirements to establish antitrust standing (Aetna Inc. v. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, No. 11-15346, E.D. Mich.; 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 82621).