Brian A. Ratner

Brian A. Ratner

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Antitrust Litigation Attorney in Washington, DC

Hausfeld
 | 1700 K Street, Suite 650
Washington, DC 20006
Phone: 202-540-7200
Fax: 202-540-7201
Selected to Super Lawyers: 2014 - 2019
Licensed Since: 2001
Practice Areas:
  • Antitrust Litigation (70%),
  • Class Action/Mass Torts: Plaintiff (30%)
Attorney Profile

Brian Ratner is a Partner in Hausfeld's Washington, DC office and head of the firm's International Practice. He has extensive experience represening businesses of all sizes and across a wide range of industries in complex class, group and individual litigation in the United States, Europe, and elsewhere. He is particularly experienced in the prosecution and resolution of antitrust/competition claims, having successfully recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for his clients. He has been recognized by The Legal 500 as one of the top 10 Leading Lawyers in the U.S. in plaintiffs' representation for antitrust five years in a row, named to the 2018 Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyers in America list and 2018 Who's Who Legal: Competition List, named by the Benchmark Plaintiff Guide to America's Leading Plaintiff's Firms and Attorneys as one of the country's top "Antitrust Litigation Stars" and DC's "Local Litigation Stars", and previously honored by Law360 as one of its Rising Stars, and named by the Legal Times to its "40 under 40" list. Mr. Ratner is a frequent speaker and writer on issues such as the private civil enforcement of competition laws and the mechanisms for collective redress around the world.

About Brian Ratner

Admitted: 2001, Washington D.C.

Professional Webpage: http://www.hausfeld.com/our-people/brian-a.-ratner

Honors/Awards:

  • "Hausfeld, which is 'at the top of its game' houses a number of heavyweight practitioners [including Brian Ratner]", Leading Lawyer in the U.S. for Antitrust: Civil Litigation/Class Actions, The Legal 500, 2018
  • Competition list, Who's Who Legal, 2018
  • 500 Leading Lawyers in America list, Lawdragon, 2018
  • Leading Lawyer in the U.S. for Antitrust: Civil Litigation/Class Actions, Legal 500, 2014
  • The Legal 500 stated that the “‘incredibly impressive’ . . . Michael Hausfeld and Brian Ratner are ‘highly skilled negotiators and litigators, and real fighters with an outstanding strategic sense.’”, Top 10 Leading Lawyers in the U.S. in Plaintiffs' Representation for Antitrust, The Legal 500, 2014
  • The Legal 500 stated that "'Brilliant lawyer' Brian Ratner is a 'very smart and business-oriented negotiator.'", Top 10 Leading Lawyers in the U.S. in Plaintiffs' Representation for Antitrust, The Legal 500, 2013
  • The Legal 500 stated that "Brian Ratner thinks strategically, is an excellent negotiator and has a solid foundation of substantive law."  In 2011, the publication also recommended him as an "engaging, highly competent professional who can simplify complex antitrust matters and make them comprehensible to a non-antitrust attorney.", Top 10 Leading Lawyers in the U.S. in Plaintiffs' Representation for Antitrust, The Legal 500, 2012
  • One of Country's Top Antitrust Litigation Stars & One of DC's Local Litigation Stars, The Benchmark Plaintiff Guide to America's Leading Plaintiff's Firms , 2012
  • Rising Star, Law360, 2012
  • Named to the Legal Times' "40 under 40" list, which recognized rising legal stars expected to play a key role in the Greater Washington legal community for years to come., 40 under 40 , Legal Times, 2009

Scholarly Lectures/Writings:

  • Antitrust: Global antitrust litigation - A brave new world, Co-speaker and panelist, GCR Live 5th Annual Law Leaders Forum, 2016
  • Co-author of USA chapter regarding the legislative framework of the cartel prohibition, investigative powers, sanctions on companies and individuals, leniency for companies, whistle-blowing procedures for individuals, plea bargaining arrangements, appeal process, and damages actions., Co-author, Chapter 39: USA, The International Comparative Legal Guide to: Cartels & Leniency 2014, 7th edition, 2014
  • Co-speaker of a presentation and panel discussion titled "Delivering Substantial Shareholder Returns Through Cartel Damages Litigation, on a Risk-Free Basis and with No Financial Investment", Speaker, 10th Corporate Counsel & Corporate Compliance Exchange , 2014
  • Conference Speaker, National Conference on Class Actions - Recent Developments in Quebec, in Canada, and in the United States, 2013
  • Co-author of chapter regarding prosecuting class actions and group litigation from claimant perspective in comprehensive book about class actions around the world., Co-Author, Prosecuting Class Actions and Group Litigation - Understanding the Rise of International Class and Collective Action Litigation and How this Leads to Classes that Span International Borders, World Class Actions, Chapter 26, 2012
  • Co-Author, Chapter 26: Prosecuting Class Actions and Group Litigation - Understanding the Rise of International Class and Collective Action Litigation and How this Leads to Classes that Span International Borders, World Class Actions, Oxford, 2012
  • Commentary on the Supreme Court decision in Wal-Mart v. Dukes, Co-Author, The Novelty of Wal-Mart v. Dukes, American Bar Association, Business Torts & Civil RICO Committee, Business Torts & RICO News, Vol. 8, Issue 1, 2011
  • Panel Leader, “Delivering Substantial Shareholder Returns Through Cartel Damages Litigation, on a Risk-Free Basis and with No Financial Investment,” 10th Corporate Counsel & Corporate Compliance Exchange, (April 7-9, 2014) 
  • Panel Speaker, "Private Enforcement: New International Approaches and Developments," Northwestern Law, (May 20, 2015)
  • Panel Speaker, "International- Private Antitrust Enforecment Around the Globe," AAI 11th Annual Private Antitrust Enforcement Conference (November 7, 2017)
  • Co-Author, "Principles and Objectives of Formal and Informal Settlements in EU Competition Cases: The Claimant’s Perspective," paper submitted for the European University Institute's 13th Annual Competition Law & Policy Workshop, publication forthcoming

Verdicts/Settlements:

  • In In re Vitamin C Antitrust Litigation, No. 1:06-md-01738-BMC, Brian Ratner (serving as one of the lead lawyers for the case) and Hausfeld represent direct purchaser plaintiffs in the first antitrust case in the United States against Chinese manufacturers. The plaintiffs alleged that four Chinese pharmaceutical companies conspired to fix prices and control export output of Vitamin C from December 1, 2001 to the present. During proceedings in the District Court of the Eastern District of New York, these Chinese vitamin C manufacturers were found to have reached an agreement to control export quantities and raise prices by restricting their exports of vitamin C to create a shortage of supply in the international market. The Chinese corporate defendants argued that Chinese law had compelled them to engage in price-fixing in violation of U.S. laws, and thus they should be excused from liability under principles of comity or the doctrine of foreign sovereign compulsion. The District Court concluded that “[t]he Chinese law relied upon by defendants did not compel their illegal conduct. Although defendants and the Chinese government argue to the contrary, the provisions of Chinese law before me do not support their position, which is also belied by the factual record.” The defendants appealed the decision, supported by amicus briefs from the Chinese Ministry of Commerce, again arguing that Chinese law had compelled them to engage in price-fixing in violation of U.S. laws, and thus they should be excused from liability under principles of comity or the doctrine of foreign sovereign compulsion. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit overturned the District Court’s judgment, holding that it was “bound to defer” to the Chinese government’s characterization of its law. Writing on behalf of a unanimous Supreme court on June 14, 2018, Justice Ginsburg reversed and remanded, holding that “[a] federal court should accord respectful consideration to a foreign government’s submission, but is not bound to accord conclusive effect to the foreign government’s statements.” Agreeing with the class plaintiffs (and the official position of the United States, as advocated by the Solicitor General), the Court pointed to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 44.1 (in determining foreign law, “the court may consider any relevant material or source . . . whether or not submitted by a party”), and remanded the case to the Court of Appeals to consider the evidence of foreign law, as the District Court had done.  , 2018
  • In 2017-18, Brian Ratner and Hausfeld have recovered millions of dollars in confidential settlements for their individual clients inside and outside the U.S. related to their claims of anticompetitive and other illegal conduct., 2017
  • Defended Geodis in Freight Forwarder Antitrust Litigation (E.D.N.Y.) - claim settled in 2014 and is pending approval before the court, 2014
  • Case Name: In re Vitamin C Antitrust Litigation - Docket Number: 1:06-MD-1738 Venue:    Eastern District of New York Date of Decision: Judgment entered against defendants after jury verdict for plaintiffs (March 14, 2013) Preliminary approval of settlements with Weisheng Pharmaceutical and China Pharmaceutical Group (March 28, 2013) Settlement Figures: $32.5 million (2012-2013); $22.5 million (2013) On March 14, 2013, District Court Judge Brian M. Cogan entered a judgment in favor of class plaintiffs against Hebei Welcome and North China Pharmaceutical Group. Over the course of a three week jury trial, Hausfeld attorneys including Brian Ratner and their co-counsel, on behalf of class plaintiffs, presented evidence that Chinese vitamin C manufacturers had met and agreed to fix the price and limit the supply of vitamin C sold to distributors in the United States. The manufacturers presented an affirmative defense of foreign sovereign compulsion, attempting to persuade the jury that the Chinese government had compelled them to meet and reach these agreements. Just before closing arguments, defendants Weisheng Pharmaceutical and China Pharmaceutical Group agreed to settle, and to pay class members $22.5 million. Days later, the jury reached a verdict against the remaining defendants, rejecting their foreign sovereign compulsion defense, and finding that the class had suffered damages of $54.1 million as a result of defendants’ actions over the course of the conspiracy. Judge Cogan entered a judgment for $153.3 million, trebling these damages under the Sherman Act (and subtracting the amount already paid in settlements). Notably, these results were achieved strictly by lawyers in the private bar; no case was brought by the U.S. Department of Justice. And the settlements reached in this case were the first civil settlements with Chinese companies in a U.S. antitrust cartel case. As China’s economic clout expands exponentially, the results of this case have wide implications in the global marketplace., 2013
  • In 2012-13, Brian Ratner and Hausfeld have recovered more than $100m in settlements for their clients outside the U.S. related to their claims of anticompetitive and other illegal conduct, 2013
  • As confirmed by Sasol’s recent SEC filing, as a result of the finding of infringement and fine imposed on Sasol by the EC in October 2008, Sasol recently announced that it had fully and finally settled a paraffin wax cartel damage claim in June 2013 that had been lodged in the London High Court in September 2011 by 30 clients, including makers of candles, represented by Hausfeld and Brian Ratner.  The terms of such settlement are confidential and were not disclosed., 2013

Representative Clients:

  • Hertz, 2018
  • Avis/Budget, 2018
  • BMW, 2018
  • Geodis, 2018
  • Deutsche Bahn AG, 2018
  • Metro AG, 2018
  • Michelin, 2018
  • PSA, 2018
  • GKN, 2018
  • Ralph Lauren, 2018
  • Auto Europe, 2018
  • Hilding Anders, 2016
  • Petróleos Mexicanos, 2013
  • Blyth, Inc., 2013

Educational Background:

  • Indiana University-Bloomington, B.A.J., 1996
Office Location for Brian A. Ratner

1700 K Street
Suite 650
Washington, DC 20006

Brian A. Ratner:

Last Updated: 9/7/2018

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