Class Action Lawsuits in Antitrust and Competition Law

Class action lawsuits allow groups of people to combine similar legal claims against the same company in one court case. This means you don’t have to file your separate lawsuit to get justice or compensation. Instead, a single case is filed on behalf of all affected parties.

Beow, our class action lawyers explain how this type of lawsuit works in antitrust and competition law and what the requirements are to join such an action.

The Role of Class Actions in Antitrust and Competition Law

Class action lawsuits are crucial in antitrust and competition law. They allow groups of individuals or businesses affected by anti-competitive behavior to band together and pursue legal action against companies engaging in unfair practices.

By joining forces, plaintiffs can share the costs and risks of complex litigation that might otherwise be too expensive or daunting for any single party. Class actions also put pressure on defendants by exposing the scale of the harm caused.

Requirements for Certification of Antitrust Class Actions

For a class action lawsuit to proceed in antitrust and competition cases, certain requirements for class certification must be met. The court will review these factors to determine whether the group is sufficiently uniform to be represented by a single case.

The main requirements include:

  • Numerosity: The class must be so large that joining all members as individual plaintiffs would be impractical, typically hundreds or thousands of people.
  • Commonality: There are common questions of law or fact that apply to all class members, such as whether the defendant violated antitrust laws in the same manner against the entire group.
  • Typicality: The class representatives’ claims and defenses are typical of the class. No unique circumstances apply to the representatives that would make their situations atypical.
  • Adequacy: The representatives and their counsel can fairly and adequately protect the interests of the entire class. There are no conflicts of interest between representatives and other class members.

antitrust cases are often consolidated in class action litigation

Pros and Cons of Pursuing an Antitrust Claim Through Class Action

The pros of pursuing an antitrust claim through a class action lawsuit are significant. By banding together, plaintiffs gain leverage and resources to take on powerful defendants. Class actions also resolve many claims efficiently and avoid repetitive litigation.

However, class actions have downsides. Plaintiffs give up control of their claims and may receive small, disproportionate settlements. Defendants face enormous pressure to settle weak claims. There are also opportunities for abuse, with some plaintiffs’ lawyers primarily interested in fees.

Key Steps in an Antitrust Class Action Lawsuit

The key steps in an antitrust class action lawsuit follow a predictable pattern:

  • Investigation and Filing of Complaint: The plaintiffs’ lawyers investigate to determine if they have a viable claim. If so, they file a class action complaint on behalf of the plaintiffs.
  • Class Certification Motion: After the defendant responds, the plaintiffs file a motion to certify the class. The court holds a hearing and issues a ruling certifying or denying class status.
  • Discovery: If the class is certified, the parties engage in discovery to gather documents, conduct depositions, and obtain evidence for their cases. This can be an expensive phase.
  • Motions for Summary Judgment: The parties may file motions for summary judgment, asking the court to rule in their favor without a full trial based on the evidence gathered. The court grants these motions if there are no disputed issues of material fact.
  • Settlement or Trial: In most cases, the parties settle before trial to avoid risks and costs. If no settlement is reached, the case proceeds to trial before a jury or judge.
  • Appeals: Either side may appeal an unfavorable ruling, starting with the class certification decision and ending with the final judgment.

Reach Out to an Experienced Class Action Lawsuit Attorney Today

If you believe you may be part of an antitrust class action lawsuit, the time to act is now. Don’t delay – contact an experienced class action attorney right away to discuss your legal options and determine if you have a valid claim.

Class action lawsuits can be complicated, but with the help of a knowledgeable lawyer, you’ll understand your rights and the strength of your case. Our firm has successfully represented clients in major antitrust and unfair competition class actions.

Call us today at 855-938-0980 or submit a free case review on our website. We’re here to answer your questions, evaluate your claim, and help you pursue justice.