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Overview

Calfee’s antitrust and trade regulation team provides proactive and trusted guidance so that our clients can address potential competition issues before they become legal problems. We regularly represent public and private companies on antitrust matters in every procedural context – before the Federal Trade Commission, U.S. Department of Justice, and in state and federal courts in complex civil and criminal litigation. 

We give clients practical competition advice that allows them to achieve their business goals while limiting their legal exposure in areas such as distribution, price, and acquisitions.

The industries in which we provide antitrust counsel are as diverse as the firm’s client base and have included consumer goods, automotive components, food and beverage, health care, real estate brokerage, software development, supermarkets, electric utilities, industrial coatings, mining, and dairies.

We provide counseling and litigation services in the areas of competitor and customer relations, pricing policies, dealer relations, Hart-Scott-Rodino compliance, joint venture/acquisition analysis, advertising and franchising. We also regularly assist clients in developing and implementing antitrust compliance programs.

In the context of antitrust law, the question often is not whether conduct is plainly legal or illegal but the degree of risk of liability it may carry. Assessing that risk involves more than just knowledge of the law. It also requires an experienced assessment of how a judge or jury will perceive the conduct, how state and federal antitrust enforcement authorities will view it, and a sensitivity for the particular client’s business objectives.

The stakes in antitrust litigation are often are enormous. Substantial resources usually must be brought to bear in prosecution or defense of such claims. At Calfee, we have the resources and the experience necessary to employ these resources efficiently and effectively.

Effective antitrust representation also requires a thorough understanding of the specific marketplace in which a business operates. Our knowledge spans a vast range of industries, and we work with clients to ensure we understand their businesses in order to effectively guide them through the antitrust maze to achieve their business goals.

Noteworthy

Chambers USA, Band 3 Ranking in Litigation: General Commercial (Ohio)

For well over a decade, our Litigation group and individual litigation attorneys have been ranked and recognized by Chambers USA. In 2020, Chambers USA researchers noted that the team "frequently advises on plaintiff and defense-side commercial litigation matters, offering considerable strengths in securities, product liability, antitrust and construction disputes." They also offer experience in white-collar investigations and litigation, "defending a range of individuals and businesses facing regulatory enforcement actions." And they represent "clients in sectors including healthcare, financial services and manufacturing."

"One client praises the team as 'experienced, insightful, practical, efficient and client-oriented.' They continue, 'When you pose a question, you can rest assured that they will respond promptly with cogent, clear and practical responses.'"

"Another client praises the Litigation group for providing 'high-quality and cost-effective legal advice; the team has been crucial to our litigation defense, and we have been very happy with all of their efforts.'"

Chambers researchers noted that a commentator stated, "This is an excellent firm that does a great job for us. The team is cost-effective, practical and has strong expertise."

Litigation Co-Chair, Maura L. Hughes, has been ranked by Chambers USA 2020 in Band 2 for Antitrust in Ohio. "the 'fantastic' Maura Hughes is a 'very accomplished litigator and counselor,' according to sources, who speak highly of her antitrust expertise. She regularly advises clients on compliance with state and federal antitrust laws and has notable experience in handling investigations into alleged price fixing and other anticompetitive behavior.'"

"Best Law Firms” U.S. News–Best Lawyers in America

Calfee was selected for inclusion in the 2020 "Best Law Firms" rankings by U.S. News – Best Lawyers® in Antitrust Law and in Antitrust Litigation (Metropolitan Cleveland).

Benchmark Litigation Rankings

Calfee has been selected for inclusion by Benchmark Litigation 2020 as a "Recommended" litigation firm in Ohio. Several of Calfee's Litigation attorneys have been ranked as Leading Litigators by Benchmark Litigation 2020.

Professionals

Experience

Experience

Calfee’s Antitrust and Trade Regulation attorneys have extensive litigation and regulatory experience in a range of industries, including the following:

  • Represented a first-tier automotive supplier in multi-district antitrust class action litigation alleging horizontal cartel activity.
  • Through an 11-week trial, successfully defended a local brokerage in an action brought by the world’s largest real estate organization alleging violations of Sherman Act Sections 1 and 2.
  • Defending an incumbent local telephone exchange carrier against a competitor’s claims of monopolization and violation of the Telecommunications Act of 1996.
  • Counseled a nationally recognized manufacturer of luxury consumer goods in restructuring its marketing and distribution systems and cooperative advertising programs and successfully defended the manufacturer in a Justice Department investigation of its programs.
  • Represented a nationally recognized manufacturer and retailer in connection with an industry-wide investigation of competitive effects on retail pricing of certain labeling practices.
  • Successfully defended a leading steel container manufacturer in multi-district, treble-damage, price-fixing class actions and in a parallel federal grand jury investigation based in Chicago.
  • Advised intellectual property clients with respect to possible antitrust implications of field of use restrictions in licensing agreements, as well as the antitrust implications of computer standard setting.
  • Routinely counsel clients on Hart-Scott-Rodino pre-merger notification requirements, prepare and administer filings, and present issues to the FTC and Justice Department enforcement staff in support of the transaction.
  • Represented a regional health care institution in connection with the Federal Trade Commission’s investigation of and efforts to enjoin its acquisition by a competing hospital system.

Services

Services

Corporate Counseling

  • Merger and acquisition analysis
  • Hart-Scott-Rodino pre-merger notification
  • Joint venture evaluation and structuring
  • Development and enforcement of pricing policies
  • Antitrust compliance programming
  • Consumer protection
  • Intellectual property restrictions
  • Robinson-Patman Act
  • Dealer terminations

Government Enforcement

  • Department of Justice civil investigations
  • Federal merger investigations
  • Grand Jury investigations and criminal litigation
  • FTC enforcement proceedings
  • State enforcement proceedings
  • Unfair trade matters
  • Deceptive advertising claims

Private Litigation

  • Price fixing
  • Monopolization
  • Discriminatory prices and promotions
  • Tying arrangements
  • Exclusive dealings
  • Refusals to deal and boycotts
  • Dealer terminations
  • Market allocations

News & Events

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Practice Contacts

Calfee Partner, Maura L. Hughes, has been ranked by Chambers USA 2020 as a "Leading Lawyer" in Antitrust in Ohio. "The 'fantastic' Maura Hughes is a 'very accomplished litigator and counselor,' according to sources, who speak highly of her antitrust expertise. She regularly advises clients on compliance with state and federal antitrust laws and has notable experience in handling investigations into alleged price fixing and anticompetitive behavior."

Chambers USA 2020

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