June 22, 2018

AmeriGas Obtains Dismissal of Federal Antitrust Class Action

Munger, Tolles & Olson represented AmeriGas Propane in obtaining dismissal of the federal claims asserted in a proposed antitrust class action lawsuit alleging that AmeriGas and Ferrellgas engaged in a conspiracy to increase the price of propane in their pre-filled tanks.

In 2008, AmeriGas and Ferrellgas decreased the amount of propane in their pre-filled tanks from 17 to 15 pounds. The proposed class argued that the companies were effectively raising the price of the propane in their tanks, violating the Sherman Act and state antitrust laws. The U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri dismissed the case. The plaintiffs then appealed the decision before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit.

In its June 22, 2018 opinion, the three-judge panel held that the plaintiffs failed to state a claim under the federal antitrust laws. The court remanded the plaintiffs’ state-law claims to the district court with instructions to consider whether to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over those claims.

The attorneys representing AmeriGas included Joseph D. Lee, Benjamin J. Horwich and Ginger D. Anders.