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Pay for delay, an arrangement through which large drug firms pay other companies to refrain from selling generic versions, is to be examined by the United States Supreme Court as early as Friday, according to some of the justices. The Federal Trade Commission says that these deals cost customers some $3.5 billion every year as it asks the Court to decide how quickly low-price generic medicines may reach the market. For its part, Big Pharma says that the arrangements are legitimate settlements of patent disputes. However, drugs made by companies such as Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK), Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (NYSE:BMY), Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Limited (NYSE:TEVA), Bayer (BAYZF.PK), and Watson Pharmaceuticals (NYSE:WPI) have been the focus of court cases. President and Chief Executive Ralph Neas of the Generic Pharmaceutical Association said that, “This case could determine how an entire industry does business because it would dramatically affect the economics of each decision to introduce a generic drug.”
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