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New York AG Files Antitrust Suit to Block Healthcare Acquisition

  • On February 24, 2022, New York AG Letitia James and Minnesota AG Keith Ellison, along with the U.S. DOJ, filed an antitrust lawsuit in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia to block the proposed acquisition of Change Healthcare by UnitedHealth Group. UHG operates one of the largest health insurance companies in the United States, and Change is an independent supplier of technologies that assist healthcare providers in submitting health insurance claims and that are used by both UHG and its competitors.
  • The complaint alleges that the proposed acquisition would harm competition because Change’s electronic data interchange clearinghouse and claims editing technology are widely used by UHG’s health insurance competitors; thus, if UHG acquired Change, it would have access to its competitors’ competitively sensitive innovations and strategies. The complaint further alleges that the proposed acquisition would allow UHG to raise its competitors’ costs and inhibit their ability to access Change’s innovations and product improvements.
  • The lawsuit seeks a declaration that UHG’s proposed acquisition of Change violates the Clayton Act, a permanent injunction prohibiting UHG from consummating the proposed acquisition, and costs and other relief.