Amicus Briefs

When a court considers a case whose outcome may affect consumers or competition, the FTC may file a “friend of the court” brief to provide information that can help the court make its decision in a way that protects consumers or promotes competition. To find a specific FTC brief, use the filters on this page.

Displaying 1 - 20 of 115

Pages

In re Nexium (Esomeprazole) Antitrust Litigation

Citation Number: 15-2005, 15-2006, 15-2007
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
Date:

Brief of the Federal Trade Commission arguing that the district court committed legal error by conflating two distinct analyses under antitrust law:  the existence of an antitrust violation, which requires a general showing of harm to the competitive process, and the question of antitrust standing, which requires a specific showing by a private party that, among other things, it suffered an injury-in-fact caused by the violation. The brief also shows that a reverse payment from a brand-name drugmaker used to settle patent litigation can violate the antitrust laws if it induces a generic drugmaker to abandon its patent challenge and stay out of the market regardless of whether the generic would actually have otherwise entered the market sooner than permitted by the settlement agreement.

Franklin et al v. Parking Revenue Recovery Services, Inc.

Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
Date:

Brief of the Federal Trade Commission and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau stating that the district court erred in dismissing a class action complaint alleging that a collection bureau hired by a private parking lot operator to collect unpaid parking fees violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), as parking fees and any additional fees incurred due to nonpayment consistute "debts" under the FDCPA.

In re Effexor XR Antitrust Litigation

Citation Number: 15-1184, 15-1185, 15-1186, 15-1187, 15-1274, 15-1323, 15-1342
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
Date:

Brief of the Federal Trade Commission urging the Third Circuit to reject the district court’s holding that an alleged reverse-payment settlement agreement between a brand-name drug company and a generic drug company was shielded from antitrust scrutiny because they submitted it in advance to the FTC and the FTC declined to file an objection with the court hearing the patent case.

Woodman’s Food Market, Inc., Plaintiff-Appellee v. The Clorox Co. and The Clorox Sales Co., Defendants-Appellants

Citation Number: 15-3001
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
Date:

Brief of the Federal Trade Commission urging the Seventh Circuit to reverse the district court’s holding that the mere sale of large-sized packages to one merchant but not another could violate Section 2(e) of the Robinson-Patman Act. Section 2(e) forbids sellers from providing discriminatory promotional services to competing buyers for resale. Two FTC administrative decisions from 1940 and 1956 held that Section 2(e) requires a seller to provide its products in packages of the same size and style to all competing buyers who demand them. The FTC’s position is that these administrative decisions are not good law, because they are out-of-step with more recent cases adopting a narrower interpretation of the Robinson-Patman Act and holding that the Act should be interpreted consistently with other antitrust laws.

Mylan Pharmaceuticals, Inc. v. Warner Chilcott plc, et al.

Citation Number: 15-2236
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
Date:

Brief of the Federal Trade Commission urging the Third Circuit to reverse the district court’s summary judgment ruling, which held (1) that a brand-name drug manufacturer lacked monopoly power and (2) that product hopping almost never constitutes exclusionary conduct in any event. The district court’s analysis of the threshold monopoly-power question foundered on a basic misunderstanding of the special characteristics of the pharmaceutical marketplace. In addition, product hopping can be exclusionary if, without countervailing procompetitive justifications, a monopolist raises rivals’ costs by depriving them of their most efficient distribution mechanisms and thus harms consumers by impeding the rivals’ competitive ability to discipline monopoly prices.

Keith Davidson v. Capital One Bank (USA), N.A.

Citation Number: 14-14200
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
Date:

Brief of the Federal Trade Commission before the Eleventh Circuit seeking rehearing en banc of a panel ruling that an entity who acquires and collects on defaulted debts does not qualify as a “debt collector” under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and, accordingly, is immune from the Act’s requirements. The Commission argues this interpretation perverts the purpose of the FDCPA and thwarts the ability of law enforcement to protect consumers from abuse.

Daniel Bock, Jr., Plaintiff-Appellee, v. Pressler & Pressler, LLP, Defendant-Appellant

Citation Number: 15-1056
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
Date:

Brief of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Federal Trade Commission in support of Appellee. This case involves the application of a provision of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1692(e), to debt-collection law firms that mass-file collection lawsuits without any meaningful attorney review.

American Sales Co., et al., Plaintiffs-Appellants, v. Warner-Chilcott Co., LLC, et al., Defendants-Appellees

Citation Number: 14-2071 and 15-1250 (Consolidated)
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
Date:

Brief of the Federal Trade Commission As Amicus Curiae In Support of Plaintiffs-Appellants before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit addressing the applicability of the rule of reason under the antitrust laws to patent litigation settlements.  The brief points out that in FTC v. Actavis, 133 S.Ct. 2223 (2013), the Supreme Court reaffirmed that traditional antitrust principles apply to patent litigation settlements -- and that patent law confers no broad immunity on parties to such settlements -- and held that a brand-name drug manufacturer’s payment to a generic competitor can violate the antitrust laws under the rule of reason.  The brief states that that holding does not depend on the specific form of the compensation which the brand company pays the generic to stay out of the market.

Motorola Mobility LLC v. AU Optronics Corp.

Citation Number: 14-8003
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
Date:

Brief of the United States Department of Justice, Federal Trade Commission, Department of State, and Department of Commerce before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit addressing the proper application of the provisions of the Foreign Trade Antitrust Improvements Act of 1982, 15 U.S.C. § 6a, which parallel those of Section 5(a)(3) of the FTC Act, 15 U.S.C. § 45(a)(3). The brief states that fixing the price of a foreign-produced component can directly, substantially, and reasonably foreseeably affect domestic commerce in products incorporating the component. It also states that effects on U.S. commerce do not give rise to damages claims by Motorola’s foreign affiliates but could give rise to damages claims by the first purchaser in affected U.S. commerce.

Hernandez v. Williams, Zinman & Parham, P.C.

Citation Number: 14-15672
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
Date:

Brief of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and Federal Trade Commission before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit addressing the proper application of Section 809 of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”), 15 U.S.C. § 1692g, regarding validation notices from debt collectors to consumers.  The brief supports the plaintiff’s appeal from the district court’s denial of her motion for summary judgment and granting of summary judgment to defendants.  The brief takes the position that the district court erroneously interpreted the FDCPA to find that only “the initial communications” from the an initial debt collector need provide the information required by § 1692(g), and that communications from subsequent debt collectors were not required to comply with the statute.

Motorola Mobility LLC v. AU Optronics Corp.

Citation Number: 14-8003
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
Date:

Supplemental brief of the United States Department of Justice, Federal Trade Commission, Department of State, and Department of Commerce before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit further addressing the proper application of the provisions of the Foreign Trade Antitrust Improvements Act of 1982, 15 U.S.C. § 6a, which parallel those of Section 5(a)(3) of the FTC Act, 15 U.S.C. § 45(a)(3). While acknowledging the concern expressed by some foreign governments about the potential collision between foreign and domestic antitrust law associated with the extraterritorial application of federal statutes, the brief notes that it is generally accepted that the Sherman Act applies to foreign conduct meant to produce and producing effects in the United States. By making such conduct subject to the Sherman Act only under certain conditions, Congress struck a balance that protects the country’s commerce and consumers against substantial anticompetitive harm, even when it has foreign origins, while avoiding unreasonable interference with the regulation of foreign markets by other countries.

Mylan Pharmaceuticals, Inc. v. Celgene Corporation

Citation Number: 2:14-CV-2094-ES-MAH
Federal Court: District of New Jersey
Date:

Brief of the Federal Trade Commission before the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey addressing the proper application of antitrust principles to a pharmaceutical company’s refusal to sell samples to potential generic competitors. The brief opposes the defendant’s motion to dismiss the case. The brief takes the position that (a) a brand pharmaceutical company’s refusal to sell samples to a generic company can constitute exclusionary conduct under established Supreme Court precedent; (b) a brand company’s distribution agreements are not immune from antitrust scrutiny, and (c) a brand company’s patents alone do not establish a lack of antitrust injury.    

In re Lamictal Direct Purchaser Antitrust Litigation

Citation Number: 14-1243
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
Date:

Brief of the Federal Trade Commission as amicus curiae urging the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit to reverse a district court determination that a brand-name drug manufacturer’s commitment not to introduce an authorized generic version of its own brand-name drug in exchange for a generic drug company’s promise to drop a challenge to the patent claiming the brand-name drug was not a “reverse-payment” under the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in FTC v. Actavis, Inc., 133 S. Ct. 2224 (2013). Not only can an agreement containing a no-authorized-generic commitment constitute a potentially anticompetitive reverse payment under Actavis, the parties’ mutual agreements not to compete in each other’s markets may violate the antitrust laws as an unlawful market allocation.

Motorola Mobility LLC v. AU Optronics

Citation Number: 14-8003
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
Date:

Brief of the United States Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit addressing the proper application of the provisions of the Foreign Trade Antitrust Improvements Act of 1982, 15 U.S.C. § 6a, which parallel those of Section 5(a)(3) of the FTC Act, 15 U.S.C. § 45(a)(3). The brief supports the appellant’s request for rehearing on grounds that a panel of the Seventh Circuit erred in affirming a district court’s dismissal of the case. The brief takes the position that (a) the panel’s decision concerning the effects showing required under the FTAIA conflicts with the Seventh Circuit’s precedent in Minn-Chem, Inc. v. Agrium, Inc., 683 F.3d 845 (7th Cir. 2012) (en banc), and (b) the issue of whether the effects on U.S. commerce give rise to Motorola’s claims merits further briefing and argument.

Jo Batman v. Facebook, Inc.

Citation Number: 13-16819
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
Date:

Brief of the Federal Trade Commission urging the Ninth Circuit to reject the district court’s suggestion that the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) preempts state law privacy protections for people outside of COPPA’s coverage, including teenagers.

Esther Buchanan v. Northland Group Inc.

Citation Number: 13-2523
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
Date:

Amicus brief of the Federal Trade Commission and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau supporting reversal and providing the agencies’ combined knowledge and expertise on the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and its application to the collection of debts after the statute of limitations to file suit for collection has run on.

Sykes v. Mel S. Harris and Associates LLC

Citation Number: 13-2742
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
Date:

Brief of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and Federal Trade Commission as amici curiae before the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, addressing the question of whether false communications or other misconduct must be directed at the consumer in order to be actionable under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA).

Lotes Co., Ltd. v. Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd., et al.

Citation Number: 13-2280
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
Date:

Brief of the United States Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit addressing the proper application of the provisions of the Foreign Trade Antitrust Improvements Act of 1982, 15 U.S.C. § 6a, which parallel those of Section 5(a)(3) of the FTC Act, 15 U.S.C. § 45(a)(3). The brief takes the position that (a) the district court decision dismissing plaintiff’s antitrust complaint may be affirmed on the ground that the plaintiff’s claim does not arise from anticompetitive effects on U.S. commerce, and (b) the analysis of the effects of defendants’ alleged conduct failed to follow the proper “proximate cause” standard.

Moran v. The Screening Pros LLC

Citation Number: 12-57246
Federal Court: U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
Date:

Brief of Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and Federal Trade Commission as amici curiae before the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, addressing the question of how long, under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), a consumer reporting agency can report certain negative information about an individual.  The FCRA generally prohibits the reporting of adverse information for more than seven years. The brief takes the position that the seven-year period for a dismissed criminal charge begins on the date of the charge, not the date of dismissal.

Wellbutrin XL Antitrust Litigation, In re

Citation Number: 2:08-cv-2431
Federal Court: Eastern District of Pennsylvania
Date:
Brief of the Federal Trade Commission as Amicus Curiae before the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, addressing whether a branded company's commitment not to launch an authorized generic in competition with a generic company can constitute a reverse payment under the Supreme Court’s ruling in FTC v. Actavis, 133 S. Ct. 2223 (2013), and describing the Commission’s review of pharmaceutical patent settlement agreements under the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003.

Pages