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Reassessing Heightened Antitrust Pleading Standards

Law360 (January 20, 2011, 2:28 PM EST) -- Judge Richard Posner said it best: “Pleading standards in federal litigation are in ferment after Twombly.”

In Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, the Supreme Court held that the factual allegations of a complaint in complex cases must suggest that the plaintiff has a plausible — as opposed to merely conceivable — claim for relief.

Initially, some lower courts seemed willing to give the decision its broadest possible interpretation, reasoning that a plaintiff had to plead sufficient facts to exclude possible legitimate justifications for the defendants’ conduct....
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