About the Firm
Software Consumer Biotech Service Distribution

BERRY LAW PLLC has a nationwide practice specializing in antitrust, commercial, and technology litigation, including class actions.  These cases have spanned a wide range of economic sectors and addressed important issues, such as the interaction between intellectual property and competition law.  Below are examples of current and former cases the Firm has litigated.

Selected Representations

Desktop Software. Lingo et al. v. Microsoft Corp. (Cal. Super. Ct , San Francisco) (Alvarado, J.).   BERRY LAW PLLC in 1999 brought the first private action in the country for damages against Microsoft under California's unfair competition and antitrust laws, stemming from Microsoft’s alleged monopolization of the markets in California for operating system and office suite software.  The Firm represented classes of indirect purchasers of such software, alleging overcharges of more than  $3 Billion.  Lingo was designated the lead case in the consolidated California class actions against Microsoft, and the Firm was selected to serve on the Executive Committee established by the Court to manage the litigation.
In January 2003, less than one month before trial, Microsoft agreed to settle this matter, by giving as many as 13 million California businesses and consumers who purchased Microsoft operating system and application software a total of $1.1 billion in vouchers to be used to purchase desktop computer hardware or software from any vendor, including Microsoft's rivals. It was estimated that 80% of the class members would share the recovery, the largest settlement in California history, are California businesses.  The majority of unclaimed settlement funds was paid to the California Department of Education for use in purchasing software, hardware, training, or service from the vendor of its choice to benefit poor schools in the state.  The Lingo settlement was also used as template for settlements in other state cases against Microsoft.

On appeal by a single class member, the California Court of Appeals and the California Supreme Court affirmed the Lingo settlement.  The settlement was implemented in the Fall of 2006.

Consumer Products.   (Transparent Tape)   In Bradburn Parent Teacher Store, Inc., et al. v. 3M Company (E.D. Pa.) (Padova, J.), BERRY LAW PLLC represented a class of businesses that purchased transparent tape from 3M Company in an antitrust case alleging that 3M had unlawfully maintained a monopoly over the sale of such tape in the United States.   The Firm obtained favorable rulings certifying the class and limiting 3M’s ability to challenge some liability elements at trial, and an expert damage report estimating overcharges to class members exceeding $90 million was submitted.  The parties reached a settlement in principle resolving the class claims less than 30 days before trial was set to begin. 

Consumer Products.  (Auto Insurance)   In Perez, et al. v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Ins. Co., et al. (N.D. Cal.), the Firm represented auto insurance policyholders alleging a conspiracy and unfair competition by some of the largest auto insurers in California.  This case includes allegations that the defendants conspired to provide their policyholders inferior “crash parts” and caused premiums paid by policyholders to exceed competitive levels for the quality of repair services provided. 

Consumer Products.  (Alder Lumber)  Morelock Enterprises, Inc. v. Weyerhaeuser Company (D. Or.) (Panner, J.).  The Firm represented a class of direct purchasers of alder lumber from Weyerhaeuser alleging that Weyerhaeuser’s monopolization of the alder sawlog market had allowed it to raise prices for alder lumber above competitive levels.  The matter has been stayed pending the outcome of an appeal in a related matter to the United States Supreme Court.

Biotechnology.   American Seed Company, Inc., et al. v. Monsanto Company, et al. (D. Del.) (Robinson, J.)  The Firm’s clients represented four national classes of direct purchasers of biotechnological corn seed from Monsanto and its controlled seed companies.  The plaintiffs include independent seed retailers and farmers who purchase corn seed from the defendants that contains traits to make the seed tolerant of the glyphosate herbicide, resistant to the European Corn Borer, and/or resistant to root worm (including purchasers of “stacked” traits).  The federal complaint raises claims under the Sherman Act that Monsanto and its co-defendants have monopolized the markets for such corn seed and overcharged purchasers as a result.  The Firm has also filed separate complaints raising similar claims on behalf of Iowa and Minnesota farmers and seed retailers who purchased such seeds from Monsanto, its co-defendants, or its independent distributors.   Those cases were consolidated with the American Seed Company case by Judge Robinson in the District of Delaware.   Souhrada, et al. v. Monsanto Company, et al.; Duxbury, et al. v. Monsanto Company, et al. (D. Del.) 
Independent Service. (High Volume Copier/Printer Service) The Firm was one of the first to seek class action relief under the antitrust laws permitting the independent, lower-cost service of technologically advanced business and telecommunication equipment.  In R&D Business Systems, Inc. v. Xerox Corporation (E.D. Tex.), the Firm represented national classes of businesses and other customers purchasing high volume copier and printer service, as well as independent service organizations, in antitrust litigation against Xerox Corporation. Class and lost-profit claims were settled for in excess of $225 million.

Independent Service.  (Medical Equipment Service) Southeast Georgia Regional Medical Center v. General Electric Company (S.D. Ga.).  The Firm represented hospitals and other end users of GE service for CT and MRI imaging equipment against the General Electric Company. The hospitals and clinics alleged that GE monopolized service for this imaging equipment by denying independent service providers access to GE diagnostic software.  While the motion for class certification was pending, GE agreed to pay $17 million to class members, and to make changes to its software licensing policies.

Distributor Claims.  In Office Outfitters, Inc. et al. v. The General Electric Company p.l.c. et al. (E.D. Tex.) lead the Firm represented classes of printing equipment distributors alleging fraud, RICO, antitrust and contract claims against A.B. Dick and its former parent company, including GE, p.l.c. (now called Marconi, p.l.c.) headquartered in London, England. Defendants settled the claims for $3 million to be paid to class members.

Distributor Claims.  Hayday, Inc. et al. v. North American Philips Corp., et al. (E.D. Tex.) the Firm represented former dealers in Philips office automation equipment alleging fraud and RICO claims against North American Philips and its Dutch parent, Philips Electronics, N.V. The matter settled just prior to jury selection for $2.5 million.  In a related action, the Firm represented additional Philips dealers in a second round of fraud and RICO litigation. The Firm’s client also represented the United States Department of Justice in claims under the False Claims Act.  That matter settled during trial for $3.5 million. Searcy et al. v. Philips Electronics, N.V. et al (E.D. Tex.).

To learn more about the experience of the Firm's counsel, select Counsel Profiles.