Heather concentrates on complex commercial litigation and counseling in the areas of antitrust and class actions, and has extensive trial experience. She began in the Firm's New York office in 2006 and moved to the Silicon Valley office in 2012.
The market recognizes Heather as a leading antitrust trial lawyer. Benchmark Litigation has named her to its "Under 40 Hotlist" three times, and she is "Recommended" for Civil Litigation and Class Actions by The Legal 500 US, where clients noted: "Heather Burke is fantastic. She is incredibly thorough and knowledgeable. Always available and always giving excellent measured advice."
Her work often includes defending international companies in grand jury investigations, civil and criminal investigations and multiple parallel class action, opt-out and State AG lawsuits. Outside of her trial work, Heather represents clients in connection with investigations before government regulatory bodies, including the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission, and regularly counsels clients regarding antitrust regulatory hurdles in their mergers and acquisitions.
Heather has also done extensive pro bono work for women of domestic violence in their divorce and child custody proceedings, and for children seeking asylum in the US after fleeing violence in their home country.
In 2019, Heather joined the Firm's leadership team as the office executive partner for the Silicon Valley office. She is also a member of the Firm's Global Women's Initiative Committee and the Firm's Global Technology Core Team. Heather also co-chairs the Next Gen Committee for ChIPs, a 501(c)3 organization with over 3,000 members that advances and connects women in technology, law and policy.
Representative cases include the following:
Defended Gilead in a class action lawsuit relating to Gilead's HIV product portfolio, where plaintiffs alleged that innovative joint ventures, lawful settlements with generics, and the procompetitive development of life-saving products were actually unlawful. The team vigorously defended Gilead's history of innovative collaboration and competition in HIV medicines and secured summary judgment on behalf of Gilead for Plaintiffs' product hopping claims and Plaintiffs' joint venture/collaboration claims, thus dismissing millions in alleged damages.
As one of the lead trial counsel and after a two-week bench trial in Delaware Chancery Court, Heather secured victory for Anthem in its case against Cigna for breach of their merger agreement, which relieved Anthem from paying the US$1.85 billion reverse termination fee.
Defending Allergan in two class actions regarding the sale of its pharmaceutical drug, Namenda® — a drug used in the treatment of the symptoms of Alzheimer's.
Successfully defeated class certification on behalf of Toshiba in the Lithium Ion Batteries Antitrust Litigation. The Court refused to certify direct and indirect classes, a rare occurrence in price-fixing cases. This case was shortlisted for the 2018 "Litigation of the Year – Cartel Defence" by Global Competition Review.
As one of the lead trial counsels in United States v. Anthem, Inc. and Cigna Corp, the largest merger ever in the health insurance industry, Heather managed more than 100 depositions in four weeks, coordinated all discovery and pre-trial work with the Department of Justice, led the team's efforts on defending against the government's novel claims of monopsony, and conducted direct and cross-examinations of trial witnesses.
Successfully defended Warner Chilcott against claims of monopolization based on alleged "product hopping" in connection with its sale of Doryx®. In September 2016, the US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit upheld summary judgment and dismissed claims against branded drug Doryx®, rejecting the claims of product hopping.
Successfully defended Toshiba in civil cases involving allegations of price-fixing of LCD panels. After a six-week trial in the Northern District of California during the summer of 2013 where the plaintiff alleged damages of more than US$2 billion, the jury unanimously found no liability against Toshiba. In an earlier six-week trial during the summer of 2012, the jury found no recoverable damages against Toshiba after the plaintiffs alleged class-wide damages of nearly US$3 billion. The case was named the 2012 "Litigation of the Year" by Global Competition Review, and was recognized by the Financial Times in its US Innovative Lawyers 2012 special report.
Secured a jury verdict in favor of Experian Information Solutions, Inc. in Fair Isaac Corporation v. Equifax, et. al., an action in the District of Minnesota brought by FICO, the dominant provider of consumer credit risk scoring services, against the three major US credit bureaus alleging trademark infringement and unfair competition in the sale of credit scoring services. The jury also found in favor of Experian on its counterclaim that FICO committed fraud on the US Patent and Trademark Office in procuring registration of the trademark in suit.
Represented Experian Information Solutions, Inc. and obtained dismissal of all federal and state antitrust and false advertising claims on summary judgment in an action brought by FICO against the three major US credit-reporting agencies and their joint venture VantageScore.
Successfully defended leading pharmaceutical company in preliminary injunction proceedings challenging FDA approval of a complex drug.
"Self-Advocacy & Countering Personal Negation When Advancing a Legal Career," June 2019: 2nd Annual Women, Diversity & Change Summit
"Eliminating Bias—Cultivating Inclusive Teams and Driving Innovation," 2018: CA: ACC Ready Player One
"What Makes a Great Litigator," June 2018: Benchmark Women in Litigation Forum
"Global Enforcement Update," April 2018: ACC Night at the Ballpark