The International Handbook on Private Enforcement of Competition Law

The International Handbook on Private Enforcement of Competition Law

Elgar original reference

Edited by Albert A. Foer and Jonathan W. Cuneo

With the international community on the brink of an explosion of private remedies for violation of national competition laws, this timely Handbook provides state-of-the-art analysis of the private enforcement of competition laws across the globe. Private enforcement of antitrust is becoming a significant component of competition policy laws worldwide; today, more than a hundred jurisdictions have adopted market regimes operating within a framework of competition law, providing a varied base for developing ways by which persons injured by anticompetitive conduct will (or will not) be able to obtain remedies.

Chapter 11: Plaintiffs’ Remedies

W. Joseph Bruckner and Matthew R. Salzwedel

Subjects: law - academic, competition and antitrust law, law -professional, competition and antitrust law


W. Joseph Bruckner1 and Matthew R. Salzwedel 2 Introduction Unlike most of the world, the United States has long maintained that private victims of anticompetitive conduct are entitled and should be encouraged to seek private redress for violations of the antitrust laws, distinct from the civil and criminal fines and penalties imposed and collected by governments. The deterrence value of private antitrust enforcement is discussed throughout this Handbook, but the incentivizing force behind that deterrence – plaintiffs’ remedies – is discussed here. This chapter begins by discussing the linchpin of the US system of private antitrust remedies, the treble damages award, as well as attendant considerations including jointand-several liability, measurement and distribution of damages, and the availability of pre- and post-judgment interest, attorneys’ fees, and costs. The chapter concludes by discussing various equitable remedies and related issues. Single versus treble damages One of the primary economic deterrents of the American antitrust laws is the ability of successful plaintiffs to recover statutorily mandated awards of treble (three times) actual damages, in addition to whatever other legal or equitable relief they may receive under the law. The Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890 itself does not authorize a private right of action or an award of treble damages to persons injured by a violation of its terms; instead, §4 of the Clayton Antitrust Act of 19143 establishes a private right of action, including an award of treble damages: ‘Any person who shall be injured in his business or property by reason of anything forbidden in...

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