‘The US Supreme Court’s Actavis judgment on reverse payment settlements – should Europe head the same way?’

The CCP’s Autumn seminar series continues this Friday with the inimitable Sven Gallasch (CCP and LAW) presenting his research entitled ‘The US Supreme Court’s Actavis judgment on reverse payment settlements – should Europe head the same way?‘. An abstract for his seminar can be found below.


The US Federal Trade Commission has fought against reverse payment settlements in the US pharmaceutical sector for over a decade. On June 17 of this year, the FTC won a probably decisive battle in front of the US Supreme Court. The Court sided with the FTC in finding that reverse payment settlements should be put under antitrust scrutiny and also set out the relevant test to be applied by the lower courts.

Europe however is trailing behind the US authorities and jurisprudence with regards to reverse payment settlements. On the very same day of the Supreme Court’s decision, the European Commission issued its very first decision concerning reverse payment settlements against Lundbeck and a number of generic companies, without having set out its approach to this kind of settlement in public.

I therefore discuss the possibility of applying the US Supreme Court’s Actavis rule, or at least the underlying rationale, in the European context. Informed by this decision, I have developed a legal test that takes the peculiarities of the European pharmaceutical sector into consideration and avoids the most controversial issue – namely the assessment of patent validity by the European Commission.

The seminar takes place from 13:00-14:00 in the Thomas Paine Study Centre, Room 1.4.

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