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Centre for Law, Economics and Society (CLES) at UCL's Law Faculty

The Evolving Jurisprudence of Vertical Restraints

UCL Faculty of Laws

Monday, March 24, 2014 at 6:00 PM (GMT)

The Evolving Jurisprudence of Vertical Restraints

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Ticket Type Sales End Price Fee Quantity
Standard Ticket Ended £150.00 £0.00
UCL Alumni Ticket Ended £125.00 £0.00
Non-UCL Student (full time students) / Academics Ended £75.00 £0.00
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Event Details

UCL Centre for Law, Economics and Society CPD course on  

The Evolving Jurisprudence of Vertical Restraints


A 10 hour CPD course 
by Professor William Comanor, University of California, Santa Barbara and Los Angeles

on 24, 25, 31 March, 1 & 7 April 2014, from 6 - 8pm 

About the course

This course explores the evolving jurisprudence of vertical restraints and their relation to developments in economic analysis and doctrine. As economic judgments have changed, so have legal outcomes. However, this process has been uneven, and differences between legal and economic constructs continue to exist.

Vertical restraints concern measures taken by suppliers to direct the actions of their distributors towards their customers. Those actions frequently take the form of fixed resale prices, or customer or territorial limitations. In either case, distributors are required to act differently than they would do otherwise. These restraints are binding only when the economic interests of suppliers and distributors diverge.

Current economic doctrine identifies the interests of consumers in these matters with those of suppliers but not with those of distributors. Furthermore, most recent economic studies, although not all, rest on the premise that these restraints are instigated by suppliers. This focus has led to the judgment that vertical restraints generally benefit consumers and are thereby pro-competitive.

This course seeks to explore these issues in terms of both their economic validity and their applicability to the circumstances encountered in recent cases. It will emphasize both the relevant economic literature and the case law which has developed. Its goal is to delve deeply into both the law and the economics of this important facet of competition policy.

By the end of this course students will have an understanding of the law and economics of vertical restraints and will enable students to critically engage with the latest economic commentary on this topic. Student will also have an overview of the most recent case law and statutory materials from the topic area. 

The course is accredited with 10 CPD hours by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and the Bar Standards Board. It also constitutes relevant CPD for IPReg.


Course outline: 

Monday 24 March
Seminar 1: 
The modern discussion of competition policy toward vertical restraints starts with the 1911 US Supreme Court decision in the Dr. Miles case. That case sets the stage for the policy debates that have continued through the next century. This session examines both the facts of the case and the final decision in detail for many of the same issues raised there remain unresolved today.


Tuesday 25 March: 
Seminar 2: 
The early economics of vertical restraints culminated in Professor Yamey's 1960 volume entitled The Economics of Resale Price Maintenance. His discussion represented the accepted judgment on the competitive implications of these restraints through the first fifty years of enforcement actions. It also offered a structure which economists and lawyers came to question. This session explores both the strengths and weaknesses of the original structure as well as its critics.


Monday 31 March
Seminar 3: 
The new economics of vertical restraints, as put forth in the writings of American and European economists is explored. A debate continued on whether the earlier judgment should be rejected entirely or whether a synthesis could be found. That argument is still ongoing. This session explores the parameters of this debate and also its influence on American jurisprudence.


Tuesday 1 April
Seminar 4: 
European policy actions and decisions are then investigated. The focus here is to consider whether there are substantial differences as between Europe and the United States; and if so, what factors account for these differences. This session will emphasize the influence of the economic debate on European jurisprudence.

Monday 7 April
Seminar 5: 
This session will emphasize the 2007 Leegin decision by the US Supreme Court and what is entails for policy standards in both Europe and the United States. It will explore what the decision said and what it did not say; and also the influence of the dissenting opinion. The session will also review the first US case tried under the new standards. We have now had 100 years of case law and debate towards vertical restraints; and this final session will ask which points have been resolved and which remain unsettled.

About the course tutor

Professor William Comanor is the William S. Comanor is Professor of Health Policy and Management and also Professor of Economics at the University of California, Santa Barbara. At UCLA, he is Director of the Research Program on Pharmaceutical Economics and Policy and also organizes a Seminar by the same name. Dr. Comanor received his Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University in 1964. Since completing his dissertation on "The Economics of Research and Development in the Pharmaceutical Industry," that subject has been one of his primary interests. He has written and lectured on various topics in this area, and founded the Research Program he now directs. From 1991 through 1993, he served on the Advisory Panel of a Federal Government Study on Pharmaceutical Research and Development, and from 1978 through 1980 was Chief Economist and Director of the Bureau of Economics at the U.S. Federal Trade Commission in Washington.

Cancellation terms: 
If you wish to cancel your order for the course your cancellation must be received in writing no later than 14 days before the start of the course. If we receive your cancellation no later than 14 days before the start of the course we will refund any amount you have paid to us for the course less an administration charge of 20%. No refunds will be made for cancellations made by you within 14 days of the conference date. 

Have questions about The Evolving Jurisprudence of Vertical Restraints? Contact UCL Faculty of Laws

When & Where

UCL Faculty of Laws
Bentham House
Endsleigh Gardens
WC1H 0EG London
United Kingdom

Monday, March 24, 2014 at 6:00 PM (GMT)

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The Evolving Jurisprudence of Vertical Restraints
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