Joel Mitnick is a partner in the Antitrust and Global Litigation groups. Joel’s practice focuses on antitrust matters on behalf of a wide array of financial market, life science, media, service industry and industrial clients. Joel represents clients in Federal and State antitrust investigations, antitrust class actions and merger clearance proceedings. He has tried merger cases to verdict and briefed antitrust class actions up to the United States Supreme Court. Joel also counsels some of the nation’s most prominent activist and passive hedge funds and private equity firms in terms of share accumulation and HSR filing strategies, board representation and antitrust/HSR compliance training.
Joel began his career as a trial lawyer at the Federal Trade Commission. He was an Antitrust Group associate at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom and, prior to joining Cadwalader, was the longtime Global Co-Head of Antitrust at Sidley Austin.
He has been selected as a leading lawyer in antitrust matters by Chambers USA, Benchmark Litigation (Litigation Star Award), The Best Lawyers in America, The Legal 500 US, Super Lawyers and Who’s Who Legal: Competition.
Joel appears regularly before federal and state antitrust enforcement agencies. A frequent speaker and author, Joel has lectured at enforcement programs sponsored by the Federal Trade Commission and the National Association of Attorneys General, and has served as an ABA Antitrust Trial Skills faculty member. In 2017, Joel moderated a panel addresing ‘‘Perspectives on Digital Markets: Platforms, Parity and Pricing in the United States, Europe and Beyond,’’ at the Fordham Competition Law Institute's 44th Annual Conference on International Antitrust Law & Policy.
He is vice chair of the ABA Antitrust Section’s Joint Conduct (Section 1) Committee and serves on the Executive Committee of the Antitrust Law Section of the New York State Bar Association. Joel is also an Advisory Board member for MLEX and a member of the National Committee of U.S.-China Relations.
Joel earned his J.D. from American University, Washington College of Law, and his B.A., magna cum laude, from Washington University (honors in economics). He is a member of the bars of the District of Columbia and New York State, and is admitted to practice before the Eastern and Southern Districts of New York, and the U.S. Supreme Court.
Significant recent assignments:
- In re Vitamin C Litigation: Lead counsel to the Ministry of Commerce of the People’s Republic of China (MOFCOM) in “historic” argument as amicus curiae in the U.S. Supreme Court and prior proceedings in the Second Circuit and district court in first ever U.S. antitrust litigation against PRC exporters to the United States. The case involves novel arguments involving comity, the foreign sovereign compulsion doctrine and Act of State doctrine. China Business Law Journal recognized MOFCOM’s victory at the Second Circuit in its 2016 Deal of the Year Awards.
- eBooks Antitrust Cases: (1) United States v. Apple: Lead counsel for Macmillan in defense of alleged price fixing allegations brought before Judge Denise Cote in parallel actions by the United States Department of Justice, 35 State Attorneys General as parens patriae, and a private class action by consumers in the remaining 15 states. Settled on the eve of trial for a briefer injunctive relief period than any other settling defendant and minimal damages while Apple was ultimately subject to more than $100 million in damages and substantial injunctive relief. Recipient of the Global Competition Review (GCR) ‘‘Behavioral Matter of the Year, American’’ award for client representation in the DOJ eBooks investigation. (2) Book House: Lead counsel for Macmillan in post-Apple follow-on case brought by independent bookstores against publishers for damages arising from the same alleged conspiracy. Judge Jed Rakoff dismissed the complaint. (3) Diesel v. Apple; Books on Board v. Apple and DNAML v. Apple: Finally, Judge Cote granted summary judgment in another series of follow-on cases against the publishers and Apple by several defunct online book sellers. The cases were dismissed on the basis that the plaintiffs failed to prove antitrust injury. The dismissal was affirmed by the Second Circuit.
- Credit Suisse v. Billing (In re IPO Antitrust Litigation): Lead counsel for Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. before the United States Supreme Court (and below in the Southern District of New York and the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit) in landmark ‘‘implied immunity’’ doctrine ruling dismissing a class action price fixing challenge for certain investment banking industry practices in connection with the issuance of initial public offerings of stock.
- In the matter of Hertz Global Holdings, Inc., represented Macquarie Capital (USA) in its acquisition, with partner FSNA, of Advantage Rent A Car from Hertz.
Joel’s litigation practice includes a significant number of clients based in the People’s Republic of China. Representative assignments (in addition to the above MOFCOM case):
- Organizer and lecturer at MOFCOM-sponsored US/EU Antitrust/Competition Compliance Program for major China export manufacturers.
- Won motion to compel arbitration on behalf of China’s largest energy company.
- Won motion to dismiss with prejudice on behalf of China’s largest state-owned offshore oil company against allegations that it violated federal securities laws with respect to disclosure of alleged environmental and operational issues at an offshore oilfield.
- Successful defense of China Life Insurance Company against a class action alleging securities fraud stemming from the Company’s IPO, which was the world’s largest IPO in 2003.
- Lead counsel winning a motion to dismiss the complaint against China Valves for securities fraud alleging inconsistent reports filed by the Company in U.S. SEC and China SAIC filing.
- Lead counsel for group of independent directors, and Audit Committee, of Fuqi International in connection with securities class and derivative actions.
* Note: Certain representations occurred prior to Joel’s association with Cadwalader.