A proposed class action was filed by a group of AT&T and Verizon wireless subscribers against Deutsche Telekon AG, T-Mobile U.S., Inc., and SoftBank Group Corp. of Japan (the former owner of Sprint Corp.). The suit alleges that the T-Mobile/Sprint merger violates Section 7 of the Clayton Act and Section 1 of the Sherman Act for anticompetitive competition. T-Mobile and Sprint, who merged in the Spring of 2020, removed one wireless carrier, leaving only three. The lawsuit claims that the result of this reduction led to consumers paying more for their wireless service.
The Department of Justice Antitrust Division, working with a group of states, wanted to block the deal in the Summer of 2019. During these discussions, an agreement was reached where Sprint would move prepaid cellular and wireless spectrum assets to Dish Network Corp. which also included the option to acquire 20,000 cell sites among brick-and-mortar purchases.
According to the proposed class action lawsuit, the reduction in options caused by the merger unfairly causes consumers to pay higher costs.
The lawsuit is Dale, et al. v. Deutsche Telekom AG, et al., No. 1:22-cv-03189, N.D. Ill.
This blog is intended to provide information to the general public and to practitioners about developments that may impact Oregon class actions.