William J. Blechman

William J. Blechman

Email: William J. Blechman | Phone:(305) 373-1000

William J. Blechman concentrates on the specific client interests as plaintiffs of large public and private companies, entrepreneurs, and public agencies, rather than on class actions or mass actions.  As part of his practice, Mr. Blechman assists multinational corporations in formulating and implementing measured and principled strategies to maximize recoveries in international cartel claims.  Mr. Blechman’s cartel practice spans the United States, Europe, and Asia, and involves proceedings incident to enforcement actions by the United States Department of Justice or foreign competition authorities, including the European Commission, the Japan Fair Trade Commission, and the Korean Fair Trade Commission.

Mr. Blechman has represented companies as opt-outs from class actions in international cartel cases, including: In re Citric Acid Antitrust Litigation; In re Rubber Processing Chemicals Antitrust Litigation; In re Parcel Tanker Antitrust Litigation; In re Vitamins Antitrust Litigation; In re Ferrosilicon Antitrust Litigation; In re Monosodium Glutamate Antitrust Litigation; In re Cathode Ray Tube Antitrust Litigation; In re Styrene Butadiene Rubber Antitrust Litigation; In re Ethylene Propylene Diene Antitrust Litigation; In re Nucleotides Antitrust Litigation; In re Polyurethane Foam Antitrust Litigation; In re Graphite Electrodes Antitrust Litigation; In re Hydrogen Peroxide Antitrust Litigation; and In re Sorbates Antitrust Litigation. 

Mr. Blechman has represented companies as opt-outs from class actions in domestic conspiracy cases, including: In re Linerboard Antitrust Litigation; In re Processed Eggs Antitrust Litigation; and In re Puerto Rican Cabotage Antitrust Litigation.

Mr. Blechman has represented companies in antitrust cases involving monopolization claims in industries including electronic payments services, telecommunications, airlines, shipping, and construction.  In particular, he has been among the lawyers involved in the civil antitrust direct actions against Visa, MasterCard, and American Express, which involve claims for damages and injunctive relief to reform the electronic payments industry.  Previously, he was among the lawyers leading an antitrust case by a low fare carrier against a legacy carrier, culminating in a landmark federal appellate decision upholding the low fare airline’s predatory pricing claim.

Mr. Blechman has represented the Attorneys General of several States in the prosecution of or advice regarding bid rigging conspiracies in the dairy, transportation, and road building industries.

Representative Antitrust Cases: General Motors Corp., Ford Motor Company and Chrysler Corporation v. Elkem Metals Co. etc. (W.D. Pa.); Unilever United States, Inc. v. Daicel Ltd. (N.D. Cal.); The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company v. Bayer AG (N.D. Oh.); Kroger Co., Safeway, Inc., etc. v. Visa USA, MasterCard International etc. (E.D.N.Y.); Spirit Airlines, Inc. v. Northwest Airlines, Inc. (E.D. Mich.); Leiner Health Products Co., NBTY Inc. etc. v. F. Hoffmann-LaRoche Ltd., etc. (D.D.C.); Republic Engineered Steels v. SGL Carbon AG etc. (E.D. Pa.); ConAgra Foods Co., etc. v. International Paper Co., etc. (W.D. Pa.); Reckitt Benckiser Inc. v. Solvay S.A., etc. (E.D. Pa.); Sealy Corp, Serta, Simmons Bedding, Tempur-Pedic, La-Z-Boy etc. v. Carpenter Co. etc. (N.D. Oh.); State of Michigan ex rel. Frank Kelly v. Hoekstra Bus Co. etc. (W.D. Mich.); Ad-Vantage Telephone Directory Consultants, Inc. v. GTE Directories Corporation (M.D. Fla.); Walgreen Co., Albertson's et al. v. American Express (S.D.N.Y.); Sears v. Chunghwa Picture Tubes, Ltd. (N.D. Cal.).

While antitrust work dominates his practice, Mr. Blechman has a niche practice representing whistleblowers in claims brought under the Federal or a State False Claims Act.  These cases place a premium on coordination with Federal and State law enforcement agencies.  Mr. Blechman has represented whistleblowers, as relators (or plaintiffs), in False Claims Act cases in the defense, health care, education, and labor industries.

Mr. Blechman has tried cases for plaintiffs and defendants in Federal and State courts, taught pretrial procedure and practice at a law school, lectured and published papers on antitrust law, and taught seminars on various other topics in the law.  His writings have been published in law reviews, legal textbooks, business newspapers, and other periodicals.  In particular, he was a contributor to the ABA Antitrust Section’s Response to the European Commission’s “Green Paper: Damages Actions for Breach of EC Antitrust Rules.”  He also was a contributor to the ABA Antitrust Section’s 2008 Transition Report on the Justice Department for the Obama Administration.

Mr. Blechman was born in Miami Beach, Florida.  He earned his B.A., with honors, from Harvard College, and his J.D., with honors, from the University of Miami School of Law where he served as an editor on the Law Review.  Following law school, Mr. Blechman clerked for the Honorable Jose A. Gonzalez, Jr., United States District Judge for the Southern District of Florida.

 

Areas of practice

  • Antitrust and trade regulation
  • Multi-district litigation
  • Complex commercial litigation
  • False claims act litigation

Admitted to practice

  • Florida, 1983
  • District of Columbia, 1984
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida, 1985—and other district courts thereafter
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit, 1986—and other circuits thereafter
  • United States Supreme Court, 1990

Awards

Education

  • Harvard College, B.A., with honors, 1979
  • University of Miami, J.D., with honors, 1983
    • University of Miami Law Review, 1982–1983

Professional memberships

  • The Florida Bar
    • Commercial Litigation Committee
    • Antitrust Law Committee
  • American Bar Association
    • Vice-chair, Cartel and Criminal Practice Committee, Antitrust Section, 2010–2013
    • Litigation Section
    • Co-Chair, Trial Practice Committee, Antitrust Section, 2004–2007

Teaching

  • Adjunct Instructor, University of Miami School of Law, 1997–1999

Publications

  • Co-Author: "Opting-Out of a Representative Lawsuit: A Principled Decision," International Cartel Workshop, ABA Antitrust Section, February 2010
  • Contributor, American Bar Association Section of Antitrust Law 2008 Transition Report on Justice Department for the Obama Administration
  • Author: "Why Twombly Does Not (and Should Not) Apply to Hard-Core Cartels," Antitrust Source, October 2007
    Contributor, ABA Antitrust Section Response to European Commission's "Green Paper: Damages Actions for Breach of EC Antitrust Rules," 2004
  • Author: "Blowing The Whistle On Health Care Fraud," Business & Health Magazine, November 1997
  • Author: "Whistleblowers Profit, Companies Pay," Miami Review, A7, 1994
  • Author: "Private Injunctive Relief Under RICO," 2 Civil RICO Rep. (BNA) Part 2, September 24, 1986
  • Author: "Agent Orange and the Government Contract Defense: Are Military Manufacturers Immune from Products Liability?" 36 University of Miami Law Review 489, 1982, reprinted in Yearbook of Procurement Articles 181, 1983
  • Author:"The Government Contract Defense," in L. Frumer & M. Friedman, Products Liability," Matthew Bender, 1983
  • Co-Author: "Basis of Observed Resistance of L1210 Leukemia in Mice to Combinations of Six Antimetabolites," 41 Cancer Research 4529, 1981

Speeches and Programs

  • "Navigating the Globe:  Developments in Competition Law in Brazil,"  ABA Antitrust Section, Jan. 18, 2013
  • "Opting Out of a Rule 23(b)(3) Class Action," ABA Antitrust Section, October 16, 2003
  • "Preparation of Mock Trial," ABA Antitrust Section, Spring Meetings, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007
  • "Selected Discovery Issues in International Cartel Cases," Aug. 2006

Biography

  • Born in Miami Beach, Florida
  • Law Clerk, Hon. Jose A. Gonzalez, Jr., U.S. District Judge, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida, 1983–1985
  • Special Assistant Attorney General, Antitrust, State of Michigan, 1994–1999

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Toll Free: 1 (800) 333-8151
Telephone:  (305) 373-1000