Antitrust and Competition

Overview

“The BakerHostetler legal team is very knowledgeable and experienced … We see no weaknesses in the team.”

– Chambers USA 2018

Clients trust us to guide their most complex antitrust litigation, provide profitable business and transaction advice, and successfully defend against challenging government investigations worldwide. Our diverse team includes more than 50 antitrust lawyers, many of them former high-ranking regulators from key government agencies such as the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice, as well as state attorneys general. With a well-established record of success, we are recognized as a leading practice by Chambers USA and The Legal 500.

We provide sophisticated and actionable strategies focused on positioning our clients for success in the most crucial antitrust and competition matters. Clients draw on our international experience and resources, including our highly regarded white collar, securities and governance, and commercial litigation attorneys. Additionally, we are one of the few antitrust teams in the country that successfully handles large-scale class action antitrust matters, including taking those cases to trial, and on appeal.

Trial-Ready

Our seasoned trial lawyers have litigated and won antitrust jury trials and related appeals nationwide, providing clients with the advantage of counsel “who have been there before” in all stages of litigation, including:

  • Identifying, evaluating and developing potential antitrust claims or counterclaims.
  • Offering practical and cost-effective guidance on complex electronic discovery issues from our lawyers active in The Sedona Conference and Georgetown Law’s Advanced eDiscovery Institute.
  • Working with economic and class action experts to address complex economic issues.
  • Winning and defeating case-defining class certification motions.
  • Efficiently and thoughtfully preparing cases for trial and presenting them to juries when necessary.
  • Advocating for clients before appellate courts.

Members of our team currently represent clients in some of the largest and most complex antitrust cases, including Persian Gulf Consolidated Antitrust Litigation (S.D. Cal.); In re Vehicle Carrier Services Antitrust Litigation (FMC); International Construction Products LLC v. Caterpillar Inc., et al. (D. Del.); Allen, et al. v. Dairy Farmers of America, et al. (D. Vt.); In re TFT-LCD (Flat Panel) Antitrust Litigation (N.D. Cal.); In re Capacitors Antitrust Litigation (N.D. Cal.); and Brandywine Village Associates v. Giant Food Stores, et al. (E.D. Pa.).

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Business and Transactions

We position our clients’ goals front and center, understand their business needs and objectives, and provide direct and ongoing guidance aligned with their strategic goals. We serve as the source of day-to-day antitrust advice for public and private clients operating in a wide range of business sectors nationally and internationally. While positioned to tackle antitrust issues as they arise, we also help our clients proactively prevent such issues through the development of compliance and training programs.

Government Investigations

We have successfully represented clients in investigations and any related litigation initiated by federal and state government enforcers around the world, including:

  • U.S. Department of Justice (civil and criminal).
  • Federal Trade Commission.
  • State attorneys general.
  • Foreign enforcement authorities.
  • Private plaintiffs looking to free-ride government investigations.

Antitrust Merger Control and Acquisition

In the sale of a company, sellers seek help determining antitrust risk so that they can select a buyer that not only makes a high bid but also is highly likely to complete a transaction. Buyers use antitrust analysis to help decide whether to invest resources in due diligence and pursuit of a deal. All parties turn to counsel to guide the deal through the antitrust agencies. Our lawyers help clients with these goals by:

  • Analyzing potential acquisitions to help clients determine the likelihood of a transaction being investigated or challenged by the antitrust agencies worldwide.
  • Determining whether a transaction requires a filing under the Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) Antitrust Improvements Act.
  • Preparing HSR filings in the United States and internationally.
  • In cases where an antitrust agency opens an investigation of a merger, guiding the client through that process, including formulating strategy with the client, identifying supportive documents and data, preparing white papers for the investigating agency when useful, meeting in person with the antitrust officials conducting investigations, guiding clients through interviews requested by the agencies, and coordinating with the parties on the other side of the transaction to achieve the optimal outcome.
  • Evaluating and preparing litigation or potential settlements.

We handle antitrust merger work in a broad array of industries, including:

  • Broadcasting.
  • Electric power transmission.
  • Healthcare.
  • Insurance.
  • Life sciences and pharmaceutical.
  • Manufacturing in the aerospace, packaging, containers, synthetic rubber, car parts, technical equipment and other industries.
  • Oil and gas exploration and production.
  • Venture capital.

Select Experience

  • Defending a downstream energy company Alon USA Energy Inc., a subsidiary of Delek US, against allegations of price-fixing in the California gasoline market. Pending in federal court in the Southern District of California, the cases were brought against multiple major oil refiners by putative classes of direct and indirect gasoline purchasers under the Sherman Antitrust Act and California’s antitrust statute, the Cartwright Act. The plaintiffs allege that California consumers were overcharged at the pump between 2012 and 2015 due to the defendants’ allegedly coordinated refinery shutdowns and other purported actions to restrict the supply of gasoline or create an appearance of a gasoline shortage in California. Persian Gulf Consolidated Antitrust Litigation (S.D.Cal.).
  • Defeated claims of unfair competition and false advertising on behalf of a national manufacturer, and through a counterclaim, recovered a significant monetary result and imposed a 10-year consent decree. In a subsequent proceeding with our client’s insurance carrier, the arbitrator found our work to be “indispensable” to the client.
  • Represented a leading manufacturer of industrial equipment against claims challenging its replacement parts policy. After a directed verdict in favor of our client on the antitrust claims, the jury returned a verdict – affirmed on appeal – dismissing the remaining state law claims.
  • Represented a biological products concern in a major vitamin industry price-fixing case involving more than 100 criminal and civil lawsuits worldwide, with our client paying only minimal fines compared with the multimillion-dollar judgments and criminal sentences for other defendants.
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Professionals

Name Title Office Email
Associate New York
Partner Washington, D.C.
Of Counsel Washington, D.C.
Partner Columbus
Partner New York
Partner Washington, D.C.
Associate Denver
Associate Cleveland
Associate Cincinnati
Partner Houston
Of Counsel Washington, D.C.
Partner Philadelphia
Partner Washington, D.C.
Partner Washington, D.C.
Of Counsel Houston
Associate Houston
Associate New York
Associate Philadelphia
Partner Philadelphia
Partner Washington, D.C.
Of Counsel Washington, D.C.
Associate Houston
Associate Washington, D.C.
Of Counsel Columbus
Associate New York
Associate Washington, D.C.
Associate Philadelphia
Partner New York
Associate New York
Partner Los Angeles
Partner Washington, D.C.
Associate Costa Mesa
Partner San Francisco
Partner Washington, D.C.
Partner Cleveland
Partner Washington, D.C.
Partner Cleveland
Counsel Philadelphia
Associate Washington, D.C.
Partner New York
Staff Attorney Washington, D.C.
Partner Washington, D.C.
Associate New York
Partner Washington, D.C.
Partner Washington, D.C.
Associate Philadelphia
Associate New York
Partner Cleveland

Experience

  • Defending a downstream energy company Alon USA Energy Inc., a subsidiary of Delek US, against allegations of price-fixing in the California gasoline market. Pending in federal court in the Southern District of California, the cases were brought against multiple major oil refiners by putative classes of direct and indirect gasoline purchasers under the Sherman Antitrust Act and California’s antitrust statute, the Cartwright Act. The plaintiffs allege that California consumers were overcharged at the pump between 2012 and 2015 due to the defendants’ allegedly coordinated refinery shutdowns and other purported actions to restrict the supply of gasoline or create an appearance of a gasoline shortage in California. Persian Gulf Consolidated Antitrust Litigation (S.D.Cal.).
  • Defeated claims of unfair competition and false advertising on behalf of a national manufacturer, and through a counterclaim, recovered a significant monetary result and imposed a 10-year consent decree. In a subsequent proceeding with our client’s insurance carrier, the arbitrator found our work to be “indispensable” to the client.
  • Represented a leading manufacturer of industrial equipment against claims challenging its replacement parts policy. After a directed verdict in favor of our client on the antitrust claims, the jury returned a verdict – affirmed on appeal – dismissing the remaining state law claims.
  • Represented a biological products concern in a major vitamin industry price-fixing case involving more than 100 criminal and civil lawsuits worldwide, with our client paying only minimal fines compared with the multimillion-dollar judgments and criminal sentences for other defendants.
  • Successfully represented two major airlines against claims of price fixing on commissions brought by a nationwide class of travel agents and by class opt-out plaintiffs.

Recognition

  • The Legal 500 United States: Antitrust – Civil Litigations/Class Actions (2014 to 2020)
  • U.S. News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms”
    • Antitrust Law: Washington, D.C. (2013 to 2020)
    • Litigation – Antitrust: National (2012 to 2020); Cleveland (2012 to 2020); Columbus (2012 to 2020)
  • Recognized as one of the top law firms for client service, BakerHostetler was named to the 2020 BTI Client Service 30 for the sixth consecutive year.

News

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Publications

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Articles

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In The Blogs

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Antitrust Advocate
Big Day for Big Tech: CEOs Testify in House Antitrust Hearing
By Joshua J. Jowdy, Ann M. O'Brien
August 4, 2020
On Wednesday, July 29, 2020, the House Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Antitrust conducted its sixth hearing into online platforms and market power, welcoming as witnesses the chief executive officers of Amazon, Apple, Google, and...
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Antitrust Advocate
DOJ Takes a Stance on Section 230 Reform that Could Place Additional Burdens on Online Platforms
By Linda A. Goldstein, Jeffrey D. Martino, Darley Maw, Ann M. O'Brien
July 24, 2020
The Department of Justice (DOJ) recently outlined proposed reforms to Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996.[1] Section 230 has been in place since the early days of the Internet and protects online platforms from liability...
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Antitrust Advocate
Fishy Price Fixing Leads to 40-month Jail Stint
By Darley Maw
June 30, 2020
On June 16, following a monthlong trial, Christopher Lischewski, former CEO and president of Bumble Bee Foods LLC, was sentenced by Judge Edward Chen of the Northern District of California to 40 months in prison plus a $100,000 fine for...
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Data Counsel
Ann O'Brien, Jeewon Serrato, Alyse Stach Author Article Examining Privacy and Antitrust Issues
By Ann M. O'Brien, Jeewon K. Serrato, Alyse F. Stach
June 29, 2020
Partners Ann O’Brien and Jeewon Serrato and Associate Alyse Stach authored an article published by the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP) on June 23, 2020. The article, “The Thin Line Between Privacy and Antitrust,”...
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Antitrust Advocate
Limits of State Action Protection for Colleges and Universities
By Brady P. P. Cummins, Ann M. O'Brien
June 11, 2020
A recently filed antitrust complaint against Duke University (Duke) provides a fresh reminder for colleges and universities that the state action immunity doctrine is unlikely to be a complete shield from antitrust liability even if a...
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FTC Finally Offers ‘Principles’ Governing Section 5 Powers, but Specific Guidance to Businesses Still Lacking