PracticeAccounting FirmsJudge set to make Microsoft ruling

Judge set to make Microsoft ruling

The federal judge overseeing the Microsoft antitrust trial is to deliver her long-awaited rulings in the case today.

Link: Judge throws out Microsoft plea

The adjudication, which will determine whether to approve a controversial settlement between the software maker and the US Department of Justice, is to be made after the financial markets close.

According to Associated Press, the court has sent a brief email to reporters covering the trial that District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly will announce her ‘opinions’.

It is thought that the judge will announce whether she endorses the harsher penalties against Microsoft, which are being sought by nine state attorneys general who were dissatisfied with the original settlement.

Observers of the trial have suggested that the length of time Judge Kollar-Kotelly took to reach her decision may indicate that she is leaning towards rejecting the settlement.

It is likely that the judge will simultaneously announce her decisions on the US settlement and the effort by the nine states seeking additional remedies against Microsoft.

The software giant was found to have violated antitrust laws in the way that it maintained its operating systems monopoly.

The settlement prevents Microsoft from participating in exclusive deals that could hurt competitors, sets uniform contract terms for computer manufacturers, allows manufacturers and customers to remove icons for some Microsoft features, and requires the company to release some technical data.

Judge Kollar-Kotelly does not have the authority to change the terms of the settlement between Microsoft and the Justice Department.

She can only approve or reject the deal, although she can offer suggestions to lawyers to change the proposal in ways that would win her ultimate approval.

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