Adam M. Acosta

Partner, Washington, DC


“Adam Acosta has a strong reputation for successfully handling government investigations and litigating cartel/conspiracy antitrust cases, including a recent string of client wins in the franchisor-franchisee, hospitality, and pharmaceutical sectors.”
Legal 500 US


Adam Acosta is a litigation partner focusing on complex and high-stakes disputes involving antitrust and consumer-protection claims.

Recognized by Legal 500 in the Antitrust Cartel and Class Action Defense categories, Adam is described as "a key player in complex cartel litigation" (Legal 500 US, 2022) and "very knowledgeable" about "responding to government antitrust investigations" (Legal 500 US, 2021). In 2022, he was named "MVP" by Law360 in the Life Sciences category—the only attorney to receive that distinction nationwide related to antitrust litigation.

Adam has helped clients achieve significant victories at virtually all stages of complex litigation in federal and state courts. Some of those major victories include:

  • dismissal of all antitrust, consumer-protection, and False Claims Act claims in a series of cases alleging "sham" patent litigation;
  • dismissal of all federal and state antitrust claims in a product-tying case;
  • defeating a motion for class certification in a reverse-payment case;
  • prevailing at summary judgment and on appeal in a product-hopping case;
  • securing a complete defense verdict as part of the trial team in a price-fixing case.

In the pre-litigation context, Adam has worked with retail, advertising, tech, entertainment, hospitality, construction, distribution, auto part, pharmaceutical, and many other clients to resolve government investigations before the DOJ's Antitrust Division, the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureaus of Competition and Consumer Protection, and various state attorneys general.

Adam also routinely works with clients on compliance and competition-related counseling involving non-compete agreements, consumer-protection issues, competitor collaborations, competitive intelligence, trade associations, information exchanges, and various other business initiatives.

As a past President of the Hispanic Bar Association of the District of Columbia (HBA-DC), Adam led one of the most active bar associations in the Washington, DC area in 2021. He served as a board member for HBA-DC from 2015 to 2022 and is an active member of the Hispanic National Bar Association and the American Bar Association's Antitrust Section.

Before joining White & Case, Adam completed a two-year clerkship in the US District Court for the Southern District of Indiana.

Bars and Courts
District of Columbia Bar
Indiana State Bar
US District Court for the District of Columbia
US District Courts for the Southern and Northern Districts of Indiana
US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
US Supreme Court
Howard University School of Law
University of Maryland College Park


Antitrust and Consumer-Protection Litigation

  • Successful defense of Boston Scientific's subsidiary BTG International Ltd. against "sham litigation" claims related to patent litigation for Zytiga®. The district court dismissed all antitrust and consumer-protection claims by direct and indirect-purchaser plaintiffs as well as claims by a Qui Tam plaintiff under the False Claims Act. BTG was the only defendant dismissed in all three cases.
  • Successful defense of Restaurant Brands International and Tim Hortons, obtaining dismissal of all federal and state product-tying claims at the motion-to-dismiss stage.
  • Successful defense of Toshiba in a multi-billion dollar price-fixing case as part of the trial team that won a complete defense verdict after a multi-week jury trial.
  • Successful defense of Warner Chilcott against "product hopping" claims in the Doryx® antitrust litigation, securing the first ever grant of summary judgment against such claims. The Third Circuit affirmed on appeal.
  • Successful defense of AbbVie in "reverse payment" litigation, obtaining complete dismissal of all antitrust and consumer-protection claims filed by direct-purchaser, indirect-purchaser, and opt-out retailer plaintiffs.
  • Successful opposition to direct-purchaser plaintiffs' motion for class certification in the In re AndroGel Antitrust Litigation in which plaintiffs sought several billion dollars in alleged class damages.  The court denied the motion for class certification in its entirety.
  • Successful defense of Allergan related to alleged reverse payment and product hopping claims in the Asacol® antitrust litigation. On the eve of opening arguments, the First Circuit stayed the trial and granted an interlocutory appeal, ultimately vacating a federal district court's certification of an indirect-purchaser class.
  • Successful defense of Gilead Sciences by obtaining dismissal of a direct-purchaser complaint on statute-of-limitations grounds, despite allegations of fraudulent concealment.
  • Successful petition for writ of certiorari in the New Mexico Supreme Court related to the New Mexico Attorney General's argument that the stream-of-commerce theory allowed it to challenge out-of-state conduct in New Mexico by nonresident corporations.
  • Successful opposition to a motion to certify a class consisting of direct purchasers of HIV treatment Complera®. 
  • Successful defense of Par Pharmaceutical and Paddock Laboratories in the seminal FTC v. Actavis litigation concerning "reverse payment" claims. After the US Supreme Court's decision in FTC v. Actavis, Inc., 570 U.S. 136 (2013) and follow-on litigation in federal district court, the FTC voluntarily dismissed its claims with prejudice for zero damages, no liability, and no injunctive relief beyond that already agreed to previously by the client's corporate parent in an unrelated matter.
  • Successful defense of Par Pharmaceutical and Paddock Laboratories in the In re AndroGel Antitrust Litigation, obtaining a voluntary dismissal with prejudice of all indirect-purchaser class-action claims at the end of discovery with zero damages, no liability, and no injunctive relief.

Government Investigations

  • Successfully counseled internet/tech company concerning a consumer-protection investigation by the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.
  • Successful representation of entertainment/hospitality client in a conduct investigation by the DOJ's Antitrust Division and a state attorney general. The agencies did not take any legal action or obtain any relief from the client.
  • Successful representation of manufacturing client in multiple price-fixing investigations by the FTC and the DOJ's Antitrust Division. The agencies did not take any legal action or obtain any relief from the client.
  • Successful representation of two companies in an investigation by a state attorney general involving their enforcement of intellectual-property rights. The state attorney general did not take any legal action or obtain any relief from the client.
  • Successful representation and antitrust approval from the FTC related to Federal Mogul's acquisition of Affinia Group, Inc.’s chassis-components business.
  • Successful representation of various companies in responding to Civil Investigative Demands (CIDs) issued by the DOJ's Antitrust Division and the Federal Trade Commission.

Antitrust Counseling and Collaborations

  • Counseled a trade association concerning the FTC’s proposed rule on non-compete agreements.
  • Counseled global tech company on various regulatory initiatives related to competition on its social-media platform.
  • Counseled national foodservice distributor concerning a proposed multi-billion-dollar acquisition.
  • Counseled global pharma company concerning information exchanges and competitive intelligence, developing an antitrust compliance program focusing on the United States, Europe, and Asia.
  • Counseled global pharmaceutical company concerning pricing and supply chain issues.
  • Counseled global gaming company concerning potential antitrust issues related to acquisitions.
  • Counseled global automotive manufacturer on antitrust compliance and training.
  • Counseled pharmaceutical companies in connection with settling patent litigation and reporting requirements under the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act (MMA).