On September 12, 2003, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit in Atlanta rejected claims that agreements to settle drug patent disputes can amount to per se violations of the antitrust laws. The decision was a victory for WLF, which filed a brief arguing that the lower court decision (which declared the settlement a per se violation) would inappropriately discourage settlement of patent disputes. The court explained that patents are intended to provide holders with the power to exclude competition, so that agreements that simply confirm that power by settling patent disputes do not violate the antitrust laws.