Leegin Creative Leather Products v. PSKS

June 28, 2007

The Supreme Court's decision in this case overturned one of its longest-standing precedents making vertical price agreements between a manufacturer and its distributors per se illegal. Under the prior law, manufacturers were not allowed to introduce evidence showing that their agreements not only did not harm competition but actually benefited it. Through our representation of Leegin in the district court, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court, we successfully positioned the case to challenge the continued validity of a per se standard. The Supreme Court ultimately accepted our argument that the correct standard is the so-called rule of reason, under which the court or jury considers both the pro-competitive and anti-competitive effects to determine whether the agreement is on balance unreasonable.