noerr-pennington doctrine n[after Eastern Railroad Presidents Conference v. Noerr Motor Freight, Inc. , 365 U.S. 127 (1961), and United Mine Workers v. Pennington , 381 U.S. 657 (1965), U.S. Supreme Court cases that established the doctrine]
: a doctrine based on the First Amendment right of petition that exempts from antitrust liability the joint efforts of businesses to petition or influence government bodies provided that such activities are not sham
Source: Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law ©1996. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. Published under license with Merriam-Webster, Incorporated.