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Faruqi & Faruqi Wins Approval of $166 Million Settlement for Lidoderm Direct Purchasers

September 13, 2018

Faruqi & Faruqi LLP (“Faruqi”) is pleased to announce final approval of a $166 million settlement on behalf of direct purchasers in In re Lidoderm Antitrust Litig., No. 14-md-2521 (N.D.Cal.).  This settlement is among the highest drug or device antitrust class action recoveries on record, measured as a percentage of actual damages.  The settlement represents the culmination of a case begun in November 2013, and will be shared among a class of approximately fifty-five (55) companies that purchased Lidoderm directly from its manufacturers.  Both class members and the district court have recognized that this is an excellent result on behalf of the class.

Faruqi filed its Lidoderm Complaint on behalf of its client Rochester Drug Co-Operative, Inc. (“RDC”) following an investigation by lawyers for the firm that first began in 2011.  The case concerns RDC’s allegation that the manufacturers of branded Lidoderm, a patch used to treat topical pain, conspired with a potential competitor to delay generic competition.  In return for the generic’s agreement not to launch, the brand manufacturers paid the generic with $96 million in free brand Lidoderm, and also promised not to launch a competing authorized generic Lidoderm for 7.5 additional months after the delayed generic launch.  As a result of this conspiracy, competition in the Lidoderm market was delayed over eight months, the price of Lidoderm was kept artificially high, and direct purchasers were thereby overcharged.

Faruqi served as co-lead counsel for the class, and supervised every aspect of the case since its inception.  Faruqi partner Peter Kohn appeared before the court in the Northern District of California multiple times to argue key motions, including the plaintiffs’ defeat of defendants’ motion to dismiss, as well as discovery motions that shaped the case.  Faruqi attorneys participated in drafting briefs on the motion to dismiss, in favor of (successful) class certification, and in support of a successful motion for partial summary judgment, among many others.  Faruqi attorneys also took numerous depositions, and directed an aggressive discovery strategy that was key to favorably positioning plaintiffs for trial.  Over the past year, Faruqi attorneys prepared for all aspects of a complex antitrust trial.  These efforts led to a settlement on the eve of trial that Judge William Orrick characterized as an “excellent recovery” on behalf of the class.

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