In re Automotive Refinishing Paint Antitrust Litigation

358 F.3d 288 (2004)

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In re Automotive Refinishing Paint Antitrust Litigation

United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
358 F.3d 288 (2004)

  • Written by Rose VanHofwegen, JD

Facts

Automotive-refinishing-paint purchasers (plaintiffs) brought multiple lawsuits alleging domestic and foreign manufacturers including German companies BASF AG and BASF Coatings (collectively, BASF) (defendants) conspired to fix paint prices throughout the United States. After the actions were consolidated in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, BASF moved to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction because BASF lacked presence or paint sales in Pennsylvania. BASF also requested a protective order, arguing that jurisdictional discovery should proceed first under the Hague Convention on the Taking of Evidence Abroad in Civil or Commercial Matters (the convention) because both the United States and Germany were signatories. BASF argued that Germany viewed gathering evidence as a judicial rather than private function, such that compelling BASF to produce discovery in the United States under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, instead of in Germany under German law, would offend Germany’s sovereign interest. The district court rejected a rule requiring first resort to convention procedures. BASF appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Rosenn, J.)

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