Paul Weiss

2001 K Street, NW
Washington, DC 20006-1047
202-223-7370 (direct)
202-204-7370 (direct fax)
202-223-7300 (firm)
202-223-7420 (firm fax)

A partner and co-chair of the Antitrust Group, Joe Simons focuses on antitrust M&A, litigation and counseling. Prior to joining Paul, Weiss, he was the chief antitrust enforcer at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), serving as Director of the Bureau of Competition from June 2001 until August 2003. Under his leadership, the Commission pursued a strong bipartisan enforcement agenda under which all but one of the more than 70 antitrust enforcement actions taken by the agency were by unanimous vote. During his tenure, the FTC prevailed in all of the 46 merger enforcement actions taken by the Commission. Joe was responsible for overseeing the re-invigoration of the FTC's non-merger enforcement program, initiating well over 100 investigations in two years and producing more non-merger enforcement actions in one year than in any year in the prior two decades. He also initiated a new emphasis at the FTC on administrative litigation, substantially increasing the number of trials before the agency, including merger, monopolization and horizontal restraint cases.


Joe has extensive experience representing clients before the FTC, the Department of Justice, the Department of Defense, and Congress in a wide range of antitrust and regulatory matters, from the largest mergers and acquisitions to price fixing and novel predation and vertical restraints cases. He has represented clients in numerous industries ranging from airlines and computer reservations systems to telecommunications, defense contracting, consumer electronics, music, financial services, credit cards, transportation, agriculture, health care, soft drink concentrate, beer, aluminum can sheet and software.

Some of his recent work includes representing:

  • Rockstar, a consortium including Apple, Microsoft, Ericsson, RIM and Sony, in its $4.5 billion acquisition of the patent portfolio of Nortel Networks in a bankruptcy court approved auction. Paul, Weiss is representing both Ericsson and the consortium in seeking antitrust clearance in the U.S.;
  • Sharp Corporation in antitrust litigation and investigations of cartel activity related to liquid crystal display units;
  • Ericsson in its acquisitions of the CDMA, GSM and Passport businesses of Nortel Networks in several bankruptcy court approved auctions for aggregate consideration in excess of $1.3 billion. The transactions required antitrust clearance in numerous jurisdictions including U.S., Europe and China;
  • MasterCard Inc. in antitrust class actions in federal court in New York involving all merchants in the United States that accept MasterCard, alleging that the fees merchants pay when consumers use credit and debit cards are fixed illegally under antitrust laws;
  • News Corporation's business unit Dow Jones & Company, Inc. in the dismissal of antitrust litigation involving the distribution of interest rates and other information about financial products over the Internet; and
  • The Lightstone Group on antitrust issues in connection with the disposition of its portfolio company, Prime Outlets Acquisition Company, to Simon Property Group, Inc. in a transaction valued at approximately $2.3 billion, which was subject to an FTC investigation.

Along with a former chief economist of the Department of Justice Antitrust Division, Joe developed "Critical Loss Analysis," a technique for market definition that has been adopted and used widely by the Antitrust Division, the FTC, and the U.S. Court of Appeals. It was incorporated into the DOJ/FTC Merger Guidelines. Critical Loss Analysis also plays a fundamental role in evaluating the competitive effects of transactions as well. Joe was also the first practicing attorney to evaluate monopolization and vertical restraints under the theory of "Raising Rivals Costs" and contributed to the development of the theory, which now plays a significant role in the analysis of such cases at both federal antitrust enforcement agencies.

Joe's history with the FTC's Bureau of Competition started in the late 1980s when he served as the Associate Director for Mergers and the Assistant Director for Evaluation, respectively. In the former position, he was responsible for supervising numerous merger investigations, and as head of the Evaluation Office, he was responsible for analysis of all of the Competition Bureau's non-merger matters.

While in private practice in 2000, Joe was nominated by the Department of Justice, and approved by the Federal Communications Commission and Federal District Court, as trustee of four wireless telephone businesses relating to the GTE/Bell Atlantic/Vodafone transaction. In that capacity, he became the holder of the FCC licenses to these properties, making him the 10th largest wireless carrier in the United States, and he was responsible for managing and divesting these businesses valued at over $2 billion. He performed a similar function for the Cingular/AT&T Wireless transaction.

Joe has published a wide range of articles on antitrust-related topics, including two papers appearing in refereed economics journals, one of which was selected for The Journal of Reprints for Antitrust Law and Economics. He co-authored an article published in Oxford's Journal of Competition Law & Economicstitled "The 2010 Merger Guidelines, Critical Loss, and Linear Demand." Most recently, he co-authored "In Defense of Market Definition," published in the Winter 2012 issue of The Antitrust Bulletin, a special issue with articles written in response to Professor Louis Kaplow's Harvard Law Review article "Why (Ever) Define Markets?"

Joe continues to be recognized as a leading antitrust lawyer by both Chambers USA and The Legal 500.  For the past three years, he has also been acknowledged by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America.  Joe was selected to "The International Who's Who of Competition Lawyers & Economists 2013" by the Global Competition Review. Earlier in his career, he was selected to Crain's New York Business "40 Under 40," which recognizes 40 rising stars in the New York business community.



  • J.D., Georgetown University Law Center, 1983
    cum laude
  • A.B., Cornell University, 1980

Bar Admissions

  • District of Columbia
  • New York

See Library Tab for articles, publications and presentations by Joseph Simons

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Second Circuit Applies Rule of Reason to Uphold Preliminary Injunction Preventing Manufacturer from Removing Alzheimer’s Drug from Market

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Third Circuit Court of Appeals Joins Other Circuits in Applying Daubert to Expert Testimony at Class Certification

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Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals Adopts Below-Cost Standard for “Non-Explicit” Tying Arrangements

Feb 27, 2015 | Publications

Supreme Court Holds State Regulatory Board Controlled by Active Market Participants Is Not Immune from Antitrust Liability 

Feb 17, 2015 | Publications

Court of Appeals Upholds Decision Unwinding Consummated Merger of Two Physician Groups Following FTC Suit

Jan 23, 2015 | Publications

Fifth Circuit Reverses Jury Verdict for Antitrust Plaintiffs, Finding Lack of Sufficient Evidence to Establish a Conspiracy

Dec 01, 2014 | News

Seventh Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Antitrust Claims Against Sharp

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Cable & Wireless Acquires Columbus for $1.85 Billion

Aug 14, 2014 | Publications

Joseph Simons Co-Authors Article in the Journal of Competition Law & Economics

Apr 22, 2014 | Publications

Federal Court Rules “Loyalty Discounts” Do Not Violate Antitrust Laws Unless Below-Cost

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Sharp Corporation and Sharp Electronics Corporation Obtain Dismissal of Antitrust Claims

Dec 24, 2013 | News

Fidelity National Financial Receives FTC Clearance for Acquisition of Lender Processing Services

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General Atlantic to Sell Align Networks

May 16, 2013 | News

Elliott Management and Hess Settle Proxy Battle

Apr 04, 2013 | Publications

Supreme Court Reverses Certification of Antitrust Class Action But Defers Decision on Standards for Expert Testimony

Feb 14, 2013 | News

Ericsson Completes Sale of Patent Portfolio to Unwired Planet

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Wellspring Acquires National Seating & Mobility

Dec 17, 2012 | News

Reckitt Benckiser Acquires Schiff Nutrition for $1.4 Billion

Oct 09, 2012 | Events

Recent Developments in Antitrust

Of Note

Apr 14, 2015

Paul, Weiss Receives Global Competition Review Litigation of the Year Award

Jan 29, 2015

Benchmark Litigation Names Paul, Weiss “Antitrust Firm of the Year”

Jun 07, 2013

Chambers USA 2013
Ranks Paul, Weiss Highly

Oct 10, 2012

Rockstar Consortium Acquisition of Nortel Patents Named "M&A Deal of the Year"

Jun 07, 2012

Chambers USA 2012
Ranks Paul, Weiss Highly

Apr 03, 2012

IFLR Names Rockstar Bidco M&A Deal of the Year

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