ALCOHOL LAW ADVISOR
ALCOHOL LAW ADVISOR
Regulatory and Distribution Law Updates for the Alcohol Industry
ALCOHOL LAW ADVISOR
Regulatory and Distribution Law Updates for the Alcohol Industry

2nd Circ. Tussle Distills Court Divide on Booze Laws

By on September 13, 2019

Sharp disagreements in the Second Circuit over whether a Connecticut liquor law runs afoul of antitrust law, recently exposed in a bitter dissent, highlight a circuit split that some experts predict will be taken up by the US Supreme Court.

A three-judge panel upheld the law in February by batting down a retailer’s challenge to three parts of Connecticut’s liquor sales law, including a controversial “post and hold” provision that lets wholesalers match each other’s prices. The panel rejected the retailers’ claim that the provision forced wholesalers into illegal price-fixing deals.

“There is a split, and it’s an important area,” said Raymond Jacobsen Jr., McDermott partner, backing the retailer’s view that the “post and hold” requirement creates a clear state-sanctioned violation of the Sherman Act. He said he believes it’s a question that will intrigue the justices.

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Originally published on Law360, September 2019.

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