Sophie Lawrance and Manon Rattle assess a recent Court of Appeal judgment against Pfizer and Flynn that has significant implications for UK competition law

The question of whether a competition authority should pay the costs of a successful appeal against its decisions may not – for many readers – count as the most important judicial question of the age, but it is one that has recently occupied the UK Supreme Court (UKSC) and which is of considerable significance for the development of UK competition law.

On 25 May 2022, the UKSC handed down judgment in appeals brought by Pfizer and Flynn (the appellants) against a Court of Appeal judgment ([2020] EWCA Civ 617) that had the result of shielding the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) from the payment of costs in most cases. By contrast, the UKSC held the CMA is not, as a matter of principle, exempt from paying a success...

Sophie Lawrance

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