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 24: Overview of the Americas

Jonathan W. Cuneo

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


Jonathan W. Cuneo1 Antitrust regimes in the Americas fall into three broad categories: (1) the United States (including many states), have antitrust legislation, class actions, and a common law tradition; (2) Canada (and Jamaica) draw heavily on common law traditions and are in proximity to the United States and therefore have hybrid models that draw on American and British legal traditions; and (3) Spanish and Portuguese countries in Central and South America, where private actions are present in inchoate form but are only now beginning to emerge. Canada2 In 1985, as European countries adopted a competition model for their economies in line with the increased pace of globalization of trade, the Canadian parliament passed the Competition Act. That Act creates a claim for a person who has suffered a loss or damage as a result of certain specifically prohibited acts, generally involving collusion or otherwise universally condemned practices; other practices, such as resale price maintenance and abuse of dominant market positions are left to government enforcement. Actions may be maintained both under the common law and under the Competition Act. Canadian courts have entertained class cases on behalf of both direct purchasers and indirect purchasers. Significantly, Competition Act private actions in Canada may proceed in either Federal or provincial court; however, most proceed in provincial court. More than any other legal system in the world the Canadian system of antitrust resembles ours in the United States.3 Frequently, class cases are pursued in informally coordinated, parallel and simultaneous, or tandem proceedings...

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