The Court of Appeals of Los Angeles rules that in the absence of an abuse of monopoly power in a relevant market, the case on sales of new models of cellular telephones involved nothing more than a permissible unilateral refusal to deal (People’s Choice Wireless / Verizon Wireless)

California Court of Appeals affirms dismissal of “unfairness” claim on ground* People’s Choice Wireless, Inc. v. Verizon Wireless, B175179. In a case building upon the definition of “unfair” as defined in the California Unfair Practices Act [1], plaintiffs, independent dealers of cellular phones (“Independent Dealers”) alleged that defendant Verizon Wireless (“Verizon”) engaged in unfair competition within the meaning of Business and Professions Code Section 17200 by (1) refusing to sell popular, new cellular telephone models to the Independent Dealers during an extended “holdback” period, and (2) selling cellular telephones to customers below cost in certain circumstances, where because of a change in Verizon’s sales policies, the Independent Dealers could not afford to compete. The

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Don T. Hibner, Jr., The Court of Appeals of Los Angeles rules that in the absence of an abuse of monopoly power in a relevant market, the case on sales of new models of cellular telephones involved nothing more than a permissible unilateral refusal to deal (People’s Choice Wireless / Verizon Wireless), 28 July 2005, e-Competitions Bulletin Telecom & Dominance, Art. N° 67415

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