On July 16, 2020, the Honorable Douglas E. Arpert for the United States District Court, District of New Jersey ordered that all plaintiff cases be consolidated as In Re Lipitor Antitrust Litigation. As of October 11, 2022, this case is in limited discovery, relating solely to class certification and causation issues. Summary judgment and class certification-related briefing is slated to begin shortly.

Cohen Milstein was appointed Co-Lead Counsel of a proposed class of End-Payor Plaintiffs on July 31, 2012 and Sharon K. Robertson, of Cohen Milstein, appointed Co-Lead Counsel on April 3, 2017 (ECF No. 647).

In July 2017, Law360 recognized In re: Lipitor Antitrust Litigation, as one of the biggest competition cases of the year to watch.

Case Background

The case alleges that Pfizer and its predecessors and affiliates engaged in an overarching anticompetitive scheme to delay competition from less-expensive generic versions of the blockbuster drug, Lipitor.  The complaint alleges that the scheme included defrauding the United States Patent and Trademark Office, filing a baseless FDA petition, and conspiring with the first generic ANDA filer, Ranbaxy, not to enter the market until 2011.  Plaintiffs allege that the scheme caused purchasers to be deprived of a less-expensive generic version of Lipitor and thus resulted in overcharges of close to a billion dollars. Violations of various state laws are alleged against both the Pfizer entities and Ranbaxy.

On October 19, 2012, Co-Lead Counsel successfully defeated a motion to stay discovery pending resolution of the anticipated motions to dismiss. Although originally dismissed by the District Court, on August 21, 2017, the Third Circuit handed a sweeping victory to buyers by reviving their antitrust claims.

The appellate panel found the lawsuits in the multidistrict litigation plausibly alleged various ploys to artificially inflate the costs of Lipitor to make it past the dismissal stage.

On remand, on August 21, 2018, the proposed end-payor class defeated, in large part, Defendants’ motion to dismiss certain state law claims. 

Name of original case: Burlington Drug Co., Inc., et al. v. Pfizer, et al., Case No. 3:12-cv-02389 (D.N.J.)