To understand how antitrust litigation works, you first must define antitrust itself. Antirust laws help limit market power in a specific area and in turn, promote competition. Monopolies are avoided by splitting up companies that seem to possess one, as well as making sure mergers or acquisitions don’t dominate a market. The point of these laws is to keep companies from working together and colluding to form a monopoly. There are countless intricacies involved in forming these laws which is what led to them being regulated by law firms that specialize in antitrust law.
If we break up the term, “trust” is in reference to the businesses that are attempting to compete for monopolization, whereas “anti” leads us to understand that we are trying to prevent these firms from doing so. This should be avoided because once a market is monopolized by a group of companies or just one company, they have complete control over market price. These laws allow consumers to have a choice between various high-quality products at better prices.
The initial laws that set this precedent in place were the Interstate Commission Act, the Sherman Act, the Federal Trade Commission Act, and the Clayton Act. The former was formed with the intention of regulating railroads in 1887. The Sherman Act followed shortly after to outlaw companies that were trying to form contracts to divide markets and commandeer business prices. The Federal Trade Act made amends to the Sherman Act to cover points missed by the original act. In 1914, deceptive practices were banned through the implementation of the Federal Trade Commission Act. The Federal Trade Commission is now in charge of enforcing antitrust laws, alongside the Department of Justice.
Antitrust Laws prevent businesses from abusing power gained through dominance in a particular market and allows smaller business to still thrive against these corporate giants. According to The DandO Diary, 31% of all cases litigation firms involved in the bet-the-company lawsuits reported their companies were involved in antitrust law cases. The relevance and necessity of antitrust lawyers are on the rise as companies grow and continue to attempt market monopolization. Give Lowey Dannenberg a call today to talk to an antitrust attorney and to see what other services we offer.