Georgia Antitrust Attorneys
Antitrust law confuses a lot of people. It sounds simple enough in theory: Businesses cannot engage in conduct that unreasonably restrains trade or unfairly monopolizes a given market. In practice, of course, antitrust litigation is much more complex. Indeed, there are many situations where someone may be a victim of antitrust violations and not realize it.
The experienced Georgia antitrust attorneys at the Law Offices of George M. Sanders, P.C., can help. We are antitrust litigators who specialize in representing healthcare providers. If your medical practice is being driven out of the market by the abusive tactics of hospitals and large insurance companies, you may have a civil claim for antitrust damages under federal and state laws. And we are not just talking about monetary damages to compensate you for lost business–antitrust laws also provide powerful injunctive tools to prevent dominant firms from continuing to abuse the market in the future.
How Do I Know If I Am a Victim of Antitrust Violations?
One reason many healthcare providers are reluctant to pursue antitrust claims is they are not entirely certain someone is breaking the law. Antitrust violations are not always public acts. There may be a tacit or implied agreement to exclude certain providers and competitors from the market. Such agreements are illegal whether or not anyone signed a formal contract.
Consider a common problem faced by many Georgia physicians: abuse of the peer review process. Every hospital uses peer review to address potential medical errors and ensure the highest level of patient care. But peer review is also easy to twist and manipulate. Some hospitals and doctors treat the process as a convenient way to punish providers who are more financially successful and pose a competitive business threat.
Such actions fall within the category of “group boycotts,” a type of collusion that the antitrust laws clearly forbid. The Sherman Antitrust Act and Georgia law both state no group of competitors may engage in “unreasonable” restraints of trade. While the nature of the healthcare industry obviously requires a certain degree of collaboration, it can easily cross the line into a conspiracy against the public interest.
In addition to sham peer review, many Georgia hospitals may resort to exclusive dealing and related exclusionary conduct to eliminate the “threat” of physician-owned surgery centers and other kinds of outpatient facilities that compete for patients (and reimbursement dollars). Many hospitals think they “own” a local market and consider any actions they take to preserve their monopoly justified. The antitrust laws say differently–and if you are at the receiving end of abusive monopoly conduct, you have the right to take action.
Do You Need to Speak With a Georgia Antitrust Attorney?
You might worry that hiring a Georgia antitrust attorney will only escalate an already tense situation. But as with most serious problems in life, antitrust violations will not simply stop on their own. Dominant firms rarely self-correct when it comes to abusive behavior that directly benefits them.
So if you know, or even suspect, that anticompetitive behavior has negatively affected your position in the market, do not be afraid to take action and speak with a qualified Georgia antitrust attorney who can review your concerns and explain your legal options. Call the Law Offices of George M. Sanders, P.C., today at (312) 624-7642 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation today.