Fenwick’s Steve Albertson Discusses the Ninth Circuit’s Ruling in Epic v. Apple with Global Competition Review

Fenwick antitrust and competition partner Steve Albertson talked to Global Competition Review (GCR) about a recent Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling granting Apple’s request to stay part of a ruling issued by the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. According to GCR, the district court ruling, issued in September, would have prevented the company from enforcing its anti-steering rules.

Albertson told the publication that the Ninth Circuit ruling indicates that it recognizes some grey area over where U.S. and California competition laws overlap.

Albertson observed that Judge Gonzalez Rogers and the Ninth Circuit panel both cited a California state court’s 2001 decision in Chavez v. Whirlpool to make divergent points.

Judge Gonzalez Rogers used that case to suggest California law could cover some conduct not implicated by the Sherman Act. The appeals panel cited the same case to suggest the opposite.

“It’s interesting that both are citing the same case for diametrically opposite propositions,” Albertson said. “That’s telling me the Ninth Circuit wants to be cautious.”

Read the full article in Global Competition Review (subscription required).​​