Drinker Biddle’s antitrust and trade regulation practice group serves clients nationwide to meet the challenges of competition today. Our attorneys, who combine years of experience in government enforcement with positions throughout the private antitrust bar, provide practical, knowledgeable and cost-effective competition-related services.
Our clients include some of the largest companies in the pharmaceutical and information technology industries, together with a range of companies in diverse business sectors including the healthcare, auto parts, insurance, building and office space, dental, paper, sports, beverage, retail stores and transportation industries.
We emphasize preventative counseling to minimize the antitrust risk posed by both federal and state competition laws. When the need arises, we have the experience and resources to litigate antitrust cases in courts across the country. Our team also has substantial experience representing companies before the Federal Trade Commission, the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice and antitrust regulators with the State Attorneys General on matters involving M&A and conduct investigations.
Private Antitrust Litigation. Drinker Biddle's antitrust litigators have played a role in some of the most complex and high-profile cases in courts throughout the country, including representing defendants in large antitrust class actions such as In re Baby Food Antitrust Litigation, In re Linerboard, In re Pharmacy Benefit Managers Antitrust Litigation, In re Oriented Strand Board, Dentsply Antitrust Litigation and In re Blood Reagents Antitrust Litigation.
We have successfully defended hospitals and other health care institutions, pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers, trade associations, chemical and paper companies, educational institutions and clients in many other industries against allegations of monopolization, attempted monopolization, price fixing, group boycotts, unlawful tying, exclusive dealing and other anticompetitive conduct.
Today, antitrust lawsuits involving companies in the high-tech sector often raise a combination of antitrust and intellectual property issues. We remain at the forefront of this challenging area of the law, prosecuting and defending antitrust counterclaims in patent litigation as well as stand-alone antitrust lawsuits.
Mergers and Acquisitions. Drinker Biddle understands that when a client engages in a merger, acquisition or joint venture, it wants the deal cleared by the reviewing antitrust authorities quickly and efficiently. Our antitrust attorneys guide companies through premerger review under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act. We encourage clients to seek antitrust counsel in the early planning stages of transactions they are contemplating. This approach helps to anticipate antitrust issues and often reduces the risk of extended investigations.
When the FTC or DOJ issues a Request for Additional Information (Second Request), our attorneys draw upon their years of experience working with officials and staff at both agencies. We negotiate with agency staff to narrow the scope of a Second Request and minimize the burden on our client. We also work closely with economists and other consultants to make the most effective presentation to the antitrust regulators.
Investigations and Enforcement Actions. Our antitrust attorneys handle all aspects of governmental investigations and enforcement actions, including complying with subpoenas, negotiating with agency staff on behalf of companies and their employees during grand jury investigations, defending witnesses during investigative interviews and depositions, and representing our clients at trial. Early and consistent communications with the enforcement officials often help to convince the government not to pursue a matter or to curtail the scope of its investigation. When the government persists in its enforcement action, we have had notable success in achieving favorable litigation outcomes for our clients.
Intellectual Property and Antitrust. Antitrust law often plays a significant role in the licensing and enforcement of intellectual property rights. In this growing aspect of antitrust law, we have obtained business review letters from the Department of Justice, defended federal and state antitrust investigations, and litigated antitrust counterclaims in patent litigation on issues ranging from alleged refusals to license, enforcement of fraudulently obtained or invalid patents, formation of patent pools and guidelines for standard setting. The DOJ's Business Review Letter to Drinker Biddle as counsel for a trade association client was the first of its kind to address antitrust issues related to patent policies implemented by standard-setting organizations.
Healthcare and Antitrust. Health care is a substantial and growing sector of the economy, and is increasingly the subject of extensive antitrust scrutiny. Drinker Biddle, which has one of the premier Health law practices in the country, provides advice to physicians and hospitals concerning clinical and economic integration, use of the "messenger model," and contracting and negotiating strategies with payors. We draft and review provider and managed care contracts and counsel clients on exclusive contracts involving hospitals, physicians and managed care plans. We provide antitrust counsel to clients regarding their medical staff, including advice on peer review, allied health professionals, accreditation, credentialing and clinical privileges decisions. We also provide guidance on collaborative activities in the health care field. One of our antitrust attorneys secured on behalf of a pharmaceutical trade group a favorable opinion from the FTC on proposed audit programs.
Antitrust Counseling. Counseling is a service our antitrust attorneys provide in all facets of our practice. Whether the client is in the early planning stages of a transaction, or is in the midst of distribution negotiations, or is in the late stages of litigation, we strive to provide our clients with practical advice and cost-effective solutions for even the most complex antitrust problems. As a part of our array of counseling services, we will visit clients’ offices and provide antitrust seminars tailored to meet their needs.