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Antitrust

 

Both the United States government and many states, including New Jersey, have laws against antitrust; monopolization of commerce, collusion in fixing prices, and other conduct that unlawfully restrains trade. 

Lite DePalma Greenberg’s antitrust lawyers are very active in enforcing these laws, and have helped clients who have been damaged by unlawful conduct to win hundreds of millions of dollars in compensation for their losses. 

The firm’s antitrust lawyers have represented individuals and businesses of all sizes in antitrust litigation. Those cases have been located all over the United States, from New Jersey and New York to Illinois and Michigan and all the way to California. They have also involved many different industries and fact scenarios.

For example, Lite DePalma Greenberg’s antitrust lawyers were a key part of a team that sued insurance brokers and insurance companies for unlawfully rigging bids for insurance. That case, In re Insurance Brokerage Antitrust Litigation, litigated in New Jersey, resulted in settlements totaling more than $200 million for a nationwide class

One of the firm’s antitrust lawyers was part of the trial team in O’Bannon v. NCAA, a landmark case in California in which the plaintiffs won a trial verdict that requires, for the first time ever, that college athletes be compensated for the commercial use of their names and likenesses. The case will revolutionize college sports and enable athletes to recover millions of dollars in compensation.

The antitrust attorneys at Lite DePalma Greenberg have handled cases involving price-fixing or monopolization in industries ranging from eggs to ductile iron pipe to out-of-network health care expenses. All of those cases were hard-fought for many years, and the firm’s antitrust lawyers battled zealously and unceasingly for our clients. In every case, the goal was to level the playing field and eliminate anticompetitive conduct that caused the damage.    

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If you or your company have suffered harm from illegal, anticompetitive practices, contact Lite DePalma Greenberg to see how we can help you.

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Lite DePalma Greenberg is pleased to announce that the Direct Purchaser Plaintiff Class in In re Egg Products Antitrust Litigation, Case No. 08-md-2002 (E.D. Pa.), has reached a $75 million settlement with defendant Michael Foods, Inc.  This settlement is in addition to over $61 million that was previously obtained for the Class, for a total of over $136 million.  The case continues to proceed against three other defendants.  Mindee J. Reuben, Counsel to the Firm, is co-lead and liaison counsel for the Direct Purchaser Plaintiff Class.  

On September 13, 2016, the Honorable Gene E.K. Pratter (District Court of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania) rejected an argument by Defendants that they were immune from liability under the federal antitrust laws. See In re Egg Products Antitrust Litig., Case No. 08-md-2002 (ECF Nos. 1441-1442). Specifically, Defendants had claimed that Section 1 of the Capper-Volstead Act and Section 6 of the Clayton Act provided them with immunity from antitrust liability for the acts of an agricultural cooperative of which they were members. The Court concluded that Defendants were not entitled to immunity because at least one of the members was not a producer as defined in the Acts. Mindee J. Reuben, Esquire, of Lite DePalma Greenberg, LLC, is co-lead and liaison counsel for the direct purchaser class.

On September 13, 2016, the Honorable Gene E.K. Pratter (District Court of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania) denied motions for summary judgment filed by four defendants in the matter of In re Egg Products Antitrust Litig., Case No. 08-md-2002 (ECF 1444). In doing so, the Court noted that it was “undisputed that each of the moving Defendants consciously committed to joining and maintaining its respective status within the UEP Certified Program. The actual components of the UEP Certified Program, of which the Defendants were undisputedly aware, could be used by a reasonable jury to determine that each of the Defendants consciously committed to a program designed to reduce supply.” Mindee J. Reuben, Esquire, of Lite DePalma Greenberg, LLC, is co-lead and liaison counsel for the direct purchaser class.

On August 4, 2016, the Seventh Circuit affirmed the prior granting of class certification by Judge Leinenweber of the Northern District of Illinois in the Containerboard Antitrust price fixing litigation. The Seventh Circuit approved of the lower court’s analysis and reliance on the methodologies for proving impact and damage proffered by plaintiffs’ experts. With merits discovery having been completed, there only remains some additional expert discovery and motions for summary judgment before a trial can take place.

Steven J. Greenfogel and Mindee J. Reuben, of the Firm’s Philadelphia office, have been named to the 2016 list of "Pennsylvania Super Lawyers" in the area of antitrust litigation.¹

On September 21, 2015, the Honorable Gene E.K. Pratter of the United States District Court of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, granted certification to a class of direct purchasers of shell eggs against a group of egg producers (In re Processed Egg Products Antitrust Litig., Case No. 08-MD-2002). The antitrust action, which was commenced in 2008, alleges that the defendants engaged in a conspiracy to reduce the supply of eggs and thereby increase prices. To date, plaintiffs have obtained over $61 million in settlements for the benefit of the direct purchasers.  The case continues to proceed against the four remaining defendants, Michael Foods, Ohio Fresh Eggs, Rose Acre Farms, and R.W. Sauder.  Mindee J. Reuben, counsel to the firm, is co-lead and liaison counsel for the direct purchaser class.