Bonny E. Sweeney
Bonny is co-chair of the firm’s antitrust practice group and a member of the firm’s Management Committee. She has specialized in antitrust litigation for more than 20 years, representing clients in price-fixing, monopolization, Robinson-Patman Act and tying cases. She has played a leading role in major antitrust litigation, including serving as co-lead counsel in a sprawling litigation against the world’s largest credit card companies, representing investors and banking customers in multiple cases against the largest banks in the world, and trying three antitrust class actions to jury verdict. Several of Bonny’s cases have resulted in landmark court decisions that have helped shape United States antitrust law. In addition to her work in antitrust, Bonny also litigates consumer fraud class actions and represents clients in commercial litigation. Bonny also has an active pro bono practice.
Bonny has represented a diverse array of clients including institutional and individual investors, NCAA coaches, NCAA student-athletes, professional athletes, farmers, consumers, and businesses and individuals who purchased products at prices inflated by anticompetitive conduct.
Antitrust / Competition
- In re Packaged Seafood Products Antitrust Litigation – Bonny serves as lead counsel for a certified class of businesses seeking compensation for admitted price-fixing by the leading packaged tuna producers.
- In re Parking Heaters Antitrust Litigation – Bonny was co-lead counsel for businesses that purchased parking heaters directly from two companies that admitted fixing prices, resulting in a $15 million settlement.
- In re Payment Card Interchange Fee and Merchant Discount Antitrust Litigation – Bonny previously served as co-lead counsel on behalf of merchants who challenged the fees and restraints imposed by credit card companies and their member banks.
- In re Aftermarket Automotive Lighting Products Antitrust Litigation – Bonny served as co-lead counsel in an antitrust case on behalf of purchasers of auto lights. The case settled for more than $50 million, and resulted in a landmark decision denying a leniency applicant’s bid for reduced civil damages under the Antitrust Criminal Penalty Enhancement and Reform Act (ACPERA), because the defendant had not provided satisfactory or timely cooperation under the statute.
- In re iPod iTunes Antitrust Litigation – Bonny served as lead trial counsel for the plaintiff class in this monopolization case, which was tried to a jury in 2014.
- Law v. NCAA/Hall v. NCAA/ Schreiber v. NCAA – Bonny was one of the trial lawyers in this case in which the jury awarded $67 million to three classes of college coaches whose compensation had been limited by NCAA rules in violation of the Sherman Act.
- In re Currency Conversion Fee Antitrust Litigation – Bonny served as co-lead counsel in this antitrust case challenging banks’ imposition of fees on credit card purchases in foreign countries. The case settled for $336 million.
Sports and Entertainment
Bonny has represented college coaches and student-athletes in antitrust litigation against the NCAA and has represented professional athletes in league disputes, in addition to teaching sports law.
What Others Say
- Benchmark Litigation named Bonny a "California Litigation Star" and a "Local Litigation Star" for Antitrust/Competition (2021)
- Bonny has been listed as a “Recommended Lawyer” in Antitrust - Civil Litigation/Class Actions - Plaintiff by The Legal 500 (2019-Present)
- Bonny was named to the prestigious Lawdragon list of the 500 “Leading Lawyers in America” (2019 - Present), and to the Lawdragon list of "Leading Plaintiff Financial Lawyers" (2019-Present)
- Best Lawyers has ranked Bonny as a “Best Lawyer in America” for her work in Litigation-Antitrust (2018-Present) and a "Best Lawyer in Northern California" for Antitrust Law (2019)
- Bonny has been annually ranked as a California Super Lawyer (2007-Present)
- The Daily Journal has named Bonny as one of the “Top 100 Leading Women Lawyers in California” (2014)
- Global Competition Review honored Bonny as “Litigator of the Week” (2014)
- Bonny was named Outstanding Women in Antitrust, Competition by Law360 (2007)
- Bonny was honored with the Wiley M. Manuel Pro Bono Services Award (2003)
- The San Diego Volunteer Lawyer Program honored Bonny with its Distinguished Service Award (2003)
Case Western Reserve University School of Law, J.D., summa cum laude, Editor, Law Review, Member, Order of the Coif
Cornell University, M.A.
Beijing Language Institute, Chinese Language Certificate
Whittier College, B.A.
Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals
United States Supreme Court
Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
Affiliations & Memberships
Appointed Member, Special Ops Team: Imagining Antitrust Law Section 2.0, ABA Section of Antitrust Law (2020-2021)
Appointed Member, Presidential Transition Task Force, ABA Section of Antitrust Law (2020)
Co-Chair, Trial Practice Committee, ABA Section of Antitrust Law (2018-Present)
Advisory Board member, MLex (2018-Present)
Advisory Board Member of the Institute for Consumer Antitrust Studies, Loyola University (2009-Present)
Advisory Board Member of the American Antitrust Institute (2004-Present)
Adjunct Professor, University of San Diego School of Law (Sports and the Law) (2018)
Vice-Chair, Trial Practice Committee, ABA Section of Antitrust Law (2015-2017)
Former Chair of the Antitrust and Unfair Competition Law Section of the State Bar of California
News & Press
"Lawyer Limelight: Bonny E. Sweeney" Lawdragon, July 7, 2019
Profiled in Law360: “Plaintiffs Bar Perspective: Hausfeld’s Bonny Sweeney,” June 5, 2017
Sweeney Named to the Daily Journal’s “Annual List of 100 Leading Women Lawyers in California,” May 7, 2014
Sweeney Named “Litigator of the Week” by Global Competition Review, October 1, 2014
Contributing Author, “The Next Antitrust Agenda: The American Antitrust Institute’s Transition Report on Competition Policy to the 45th President of the United States,” American Antitrust Institute (2017)
Contributing Author, “Antitrust Law Developments (Eighth),” ABA Section of Antitrust Law (2017)
Bonny E. Sweeney, “Earning ACPERA’s Civil Benefits,” 29 Antitrust Magazine 37 (Summer 2015)
Bonny E. Sweeney, “Defining Antitrust Violations in the United States,” Private Enforcement of Antitrust Law in the United States: A Handbook (Albert A. Foer and Randy M. Stutz, eds.) (Elgar, 2012)
Bonny E. Sweeney, “Defining Antitrust Violations in the US,” The International Handbook on Private Enforcement of Competition Law (Albert A. Foer and Jonathan W. Cuneo, eds.) (Elgar, 2010)
Co-author, “State Common Law Torts,” Business Torts and Unfair Competition Law, Antitrust and Unfair Competition Law Treatise (4th ed., 2010)
Co-author, “The Next Antitrust Agenda: The American Antitrust Institute’s Transition Report on Competition Policy to the 44th President of the United States," (Albert A. Foer, ed. 2008)
Bonny E. Sweeney, The ‘Federalization’ of the Cartwright Act, 17 COMPETITION 139 (Fall 2008)
Bonny E. Sweeney, “An Overview of Section 2 Enforcement and Developments,” 2008 Wis. L. Rev. 231 (2008)
Bonny E. Sweeney, “Market Competitiveness: Does State Antitrust Law Need to be Updated?” Statement Before California Senate Judiciary Committee, 14 COMPETITION (Spring/Summer 2005)
Presentations & Speeches
“Antitrust Trials: Lessons from the Battlefield”, Bar Association of San Francisco, San Francisco, CA (September 2019)
"Strengthening Antitrust Enforcement," American ANtitrust Institute 20th Annual Policy Conference Washington, D.C. (June 2019)
“Antitrust ‘Markman’ Hearings: Cartel Class Certification Battles”, ABA Antitrust Section, 2019 Spring Meeting, Washington, D.C. (March 2019)
“Celebrating Women in Competition Law”, California Lawyers’ Association, San Francisco, CA (March 2019)
"Antitrust and Silicon Valley: New Themes and Direction in Competition Law and Policy", Santa Clara University School of Law Review, Santa Clara, CA (March 2019)
ACPERA in Civil Cases panel, ABA Section of Antitrust Law’s 66th Spring Meeting (April 2018)
“A Fresh Look at the Role of Economics in Antitrust Analysis”, The American Antitrust Institute 17th Annual Conference, Washington, D.C. (June 2016)
Faculty Member, ABA Antitrust Masters Course, Williamsburg, VA (Sept. 2016)
Participant, Mock Trial, ABA Section of Antitrust Law, Spring Meeting, Washington, D.C. (April 2015)
Participant, Mock Trial, George Washington University, Washington, D.C. (Sept. 2015)
"Litigation in the Aftermath of Criminal Prosecution”, ABA Antitrust Section, 2014 Spring Meeting, Washington, D.C. (March 2014)
Faculty Member, ABA Antitrust Masters Course, Williamsburg, VA (Sept. 2014) Faculty Member, ABA/IBA International Cartel Workshop, Rome, Italy (Feb. 2014)
“Comcasting a Wider Net? A Real-Life Study of Comcast Corp. v. Behrend’s Application and Effect at Class Certification”, ABA 2013 Class Action National Institute, Boston, MA (Oct. 2013)
“Recent Developments in California Antitrust and Unfair Competition Law”, Antitrust and Unfair Competition Law Section, San Francisco, CA (June 2013)
“Judgment Sharing Agreements: The Plaintiff’s Perspective”, ABA Antitrust Section, 2013 Spring Meeting, Washington, D.C. (Apr. 2013)
“Antitrust and Sports Law”, Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference, Lahaina, HI (Aug. 2012)
Contributor, “Joint Comments of the American Bar Association Section of Antitrust Law and Section of International Law to the Department for Business Innovation & Skills’ Consultation on Options for Reform of Private Actions in Competition Law” (July 2012)
Faculty Member, ABA/IBA International Cartel Workshop, Vancouver, Canada (Feb. 2012) “Clayworth v. Pfizer”, Los Angeles County Bar Association, Antitrust Section (Mar. 2011) Faculty Member, ABA/IBA International Cartel Workshop, Paris, France (Feb. 2010)
“Hydrogen Peroxide Will Clear It up Right Away: Developments in the Law of Class Certification”, ABA Section of Litigation, 13th Annual National Institute on Class Actions, San Francisco, CA (Oct. 2009); Washington, D.C. (Nov. 2009)
“The Future of Privacy Advocacy Conference”, San Diego, CA (May 2009)
“Re-Energizing Section 2 of the Sherman Act”, American Antitrust Institute’s 10th Annual Conference, Washington, D.C. (June 2008)
“Plaintiffs’ Strategies for Pursuing Private Damage Claims”, ABA Antitrust Section, 2008 International Cartel Workshop, San Francisco, CA (Jan. 2008)
“Recent Developments in Class Action Litigation”, PLI program, New York, NY (Mar. 2007)
“An Overview of Section 2 Enforcement and Developments”, University of Wisconsin Law School Colloquium, Madison, WI (Nov. 2007)
Plaintiffs’ Trial Team, ABA Antitrust Section, The Antitrust Litigation Course, Philadelphia, PA (Oct. 2007)
“An Overview of Section 2 Enforcement and Developments”, American Antitrust Institute, Washington D.C. (June. 2007)
“Consumer Litigation (Bus. & Prof. C. §17200, Class Actions, CLRA)”, Rutter Group program, San Francisco and Los Angeles, CA (Mar. 2006)
“Recent Developments in 17200 Litigation”, Antitrust and Unfair Competition Law Section, San Francisco, CA (Dec. 2006)
“Arbitration in the Class Action Context”, CLE International program, San Francisco, CA (Feb. 2006)
“Financial Services and Insurance Industry Litigation”, ALI-ABA program, New York, NY (Mar. 2005)
“Recent Developments in Antitrust Law”, Antitrust and Unfair Competition Law Section, San Francisco, CA (Jan. 2005)
“Market Competitiveness: Does State Antitrust Law Need to be Updated?” Testimony, California Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Anti-Competitive Conduct and Market Competitiveness, Sacramento, CA (Aug. 2005)
“Introduction to California Antitrust Law”, Antitrust and Unfair Competition Law Section, Monterey, CA (Oct. 2004)
“Trying the Antitrust Case”, Antitrust and Unfair Competition Law Section, Los Angeles, CA (Apr. 2004)
“Implications of Proposition 64: Changes to the UCL, Bus. & Prof. Code §§17200 et seq. Imposed by Prop. 64”, Antitrust and Unfair Competition Law Section, Los Angeles and San Francisco, CA (Nov. 2004)
“The Nuts and Bolts of 17200”, Antitrust and Unfair Competition Law Section, Los Angeles, CA (Mar. 2003)
“Nuts and Bolts of a 17200 Action”, Section Educational Institute, Berkeley, CA (Jan. 2003)
“The Unfair Competition Law”, San Diego County Bar Association program, San Diego, CA (July 2003)
“Financial Privacy Law”, National Council of Higher Education program, Carlsbad, CA (Mar. 2000)
Guest speaker on KSDO radio Legal Affairs program devoted to financial privacy issues, San Diego, CA (Feb. 2000)