September 29, 2014

On September 29, 2014, the Tenth Circuit affirmed the U.S. District court for the District of Kansas's judgment in In re Urethane Antitrust Litigation, in turn rejecting Dow's challenges to the order for class certification, the refusal to decertify the class, the admission of plaintiffs' statistical expert's testimony, the sufficiency of the evidence, and the award of damages.

This antitrust class action stems from an allegation that Dow Chemical Company conspired with competitors to fix prices for polyurethane chemical products. Over Dow’s objection, the district court certified a plaintiff class including all industrial purchasers of polyurethane products during the alleged conspiracy period. The action went to trial, and the jury returned a verdict against Dow. The district court entered judgment for the plaintiffs, denying Dow’s motions for decertification of the class and judgment as a matter of law.

Cohen Milstein serves as co-lead counsel with Fine, Kaplan and Black, R.P.C., on behalf of a class of direct purchasers of chemicals used to make many everyday products, from mattress foam to carpet cushion, who were overcharged as a result of a nationwide price-fixing conspiracy.  The trial team also included attorneys from Freedman Boyd Hollander Goldberg Urias & Ward P.A., and Kellogg, Huber, Hansen, Todd, Evans & Figel, P.L.L.C.  In this long-running case, plaintiffs reached settlements totaling $139 million with defendants Bayer, BASF, and Huntsman before obtaining a jury verdict against the last remaining defendant, Dow Chemical, for over $400 million.  In accordance with federal antitrust laws, that verdict was subject to trebling and Dow has been ordered to pay to more than $1 billion.