A federal judge who is overseeing the case for AT&T proposed $39 billion deal to acquire T-Mobile has asked that both sides file a joint plan on Sept. 16 regarding scheduling and managing the case, according to reports.
In an order signed on Monday, Judge Ellen S. Huvelle of the United States District Court in Washington, has asked the Justice Department, AT&T and Deutsche Telekom, the parent company of T-Mobile USA, to file the joint plan by the due date and has ordered that the parties shall be prepared to discuss the prospects for settlement at a Sept. 21 status conference, according to The New York Times.
On Aug. 31, the U.S. Justice Department filed a lawsuit to block AT&T's acquisition of T-Mobile because they felt the merger would remove competition and lead to higher prices for cellular consumers.
AT&T vowed to fight the lawsuit, and said the deal will result in job creation at a time when the nation needs it the most. AT&T said they will bring back about 5,000 call-center jobs.
Sprint also filed a lawsuit earlier this week as a case related to the Justice Department's effort to block the pending merger. It, too, believes the merger could harm consumers and stifle competition.