Antitrust laws protect consumers from business practices that prevent the benefits of a competitive market. These laws save Texas residents and U.S. citizens millions of dollars each year. We often represent clients who are victims of antitrust law violations.
According to the Department of Justice, there are three federal antitrust laws. The most common violations of these laws occur in the following areas.
This violation of antitrust law occurs when competitors agree on a price or establish boundaries for minimum or maximum prices. It may fix the price at a retail or wholesale level. By taking this action, organizations can maintain profit margins. However, it disrupts the laws of supply and demand. It can reduce innovation incentives, raise barriers to entry and cost you as a consumer or small business owner more in the long run.
Antitrust laws prevent market exploitation. While businesses that corner the market with a superior product are not illegal, monopolies often maintain control by using predatory acts and other improper conduct, such as the following:
- Exclusive dealings allow a single supplier, which requires buyers and sellers to do business with at that one entity.
- Price discrimination occurs when you pay a different price for similar goods, depending on the seller and your geographic location.
- Tying contracts require that you can only get a particular product or service if you also purchase a different product or service from the seller.
Bid rigging, market division or allocation, boycotts and mergers that significantly reduce competition also violate antitrust laws. Legislation regarding unfair business practices is complex. If your case goes before the Department of Justice or FTC, a deep understanding of the law and legal process can help you obtain the best possible outcome.