Case Details


Tobacco Settlement

Filing State



U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit




A.D. Bedell Wholesale Co., Inc. v. Philip Morris, Inc., 263 F.3d 239 (3d Cir. 2001), cert. denied, 534 U.S. 1081 (2002)


The Third Circuit held that state action immunity was not available because the anticompetitive injury resulted from the tobacco companies’ conduct after implementation of the MSA, rather than from conduct by the state, and the state’s policy to replace competition with regulation, although clearly articulated, was not actively supervised. However, the Master Settlement Agreement was immune under the Noerr-Pennington doctrine, which protects petitioning of the government by private actors.

Case Description

Tobacco manufacturers challenged the Master Settlement Agreement as an anticompetitive practice that violated the antitrust laws. The states argued it was protected by state action immunity. The court held it was not state action.