Cape Coral-Fort Myers Antitrust Attorney
Unfettered competition is the cornerstone of the US economy, and there are both federal and state statutes in place to protect Florida businesses. Still, some organizations violate these laws through anticompetitive conduct. You do have rights, and it is possible to file a private lawsuit to enforce them. Our team at the Law Offices of George M. Sanders, P.C. can help, so please contact our office to schedule a consultation with a Cape Coral-Fort Myers antitrust attorney.
Federal and State Antitrust Laws Protect Florida Business Owners
Two federal antitrust laws address anticompetitive conduct and attempt to create monopolies, including:
- The Sherman Act; and,
- The Clayton Act.
These statutes, along with the Florida Antitrust Act, prohibit various forms of collusion and illegal restraints of trade. The US Department of Justice – Antitrust Division and Florida State Attorney General are charged with enforcement of the laws. These government agencies can take civil action or press criminal charges against such acts as:
- Agreements to fix prices, conditions, or terms of sale;
- Contracts, combinations, and conspiracies to inhibit free trade;
- Bid rigging and coordination among bidders;
- Agreements to divide territories and customers among competitors;
- Illegal group boycotts;
- Unlawful exclusive dealings contracts; and,
- Any other monopolistic or anticompetitive conduct that violates state and federal antitrust laws.
Filing a Private Lawsuit
Though US and Florida government agencies have the authority to enforce antitrust laws, they may not take action for various reasons. Even when they do, there can be considerable delays that adversely affect your business interests with each passing day.
Fortunately, antitrust statutes provide Florida business owners with a private right of action, so it is possible to file a lawsuit in court. The specifics will depend on your circumstances, but you must prove:
- The offending organization possesses monopoly power or market dominance; and,
- This power was obtained or maintained through unlawful means, as opposed (or in addition) to having a superior product, offering a higher quality service, or engaging in smarter business practices.
Trust a Cape Coral-Fort Myers Antitrust Attorney to Protect Your Interests
The elements of a private antitrust cause of action may seem straightforward, but there are numerous challenges to establishing your case. Illegal anticompetitive conduct can be difficult to identify, especially with complicated agreements and complex collusive arrangements. Plus, organizations that are breaking the law will do their best to hide unlawful conduct.
Therefore, it is essential to retain an antitrust lawyer who has in-depth knowledge of the relevant laws and high-level business acumen. In addition, you need an attorney with investigative skills and resources to collect relevant evidence regarding anticompetitive conduct. With the right legal counsel to assist with your private lawsuit, you may be entitled to:
- Monetary damages to compensate for the losses you sustain as a result of antitrust violations; and,
- Equitable relief, such as a court order for the offending organization to cease and desist.
Consult with an Antitrust Lawyer Regarding Your Claim
For more information on your rights and remedies as a Florida business owner, please contact the Law Offices of George M. Sanders, P.C. We can set up a consultation with a Cape Coral-Fort Myers antitrust attorney who will review your circumstances and explain how antitrust laws apply to your situation.