New Jersey Antitrust Attorneys
Free markets are critical to the economic success of New Jersey and America as a whole. But free markets depend on competition. And competition is often threatened when a handful of firms or individuals decide to engage in collusion.
Antitrust laws are intended to identify and stop such behaviors. Since the 19th century federal and state antitrust laws have banned unreasonable restraints of trade. Today the antitrust laws are more important than ever, particularly in highly consolidated industries like healthcare. The New Jersey antitrust attorneys at the Law Offices of George M. Sanders, P.C., represent physicians and other healthcare providers whose livelihoods–and by extension, their ability to serve patients–is impaired by illegal and anticompetitive activities. If you have been harmed due to collusion in the New Jersey healthcare market, we can help you obtain injunctive relief and monetary damages against the responsible parties.
Identifying Anticompetitive Conduct in the Marketplace
Antitrust enforcement at the government level focuses principally on consumer protection. But federal and state antitrust laws also authorize private parties to initiate civil actions if they have suffered losses or damages due to the illegal conduct of another. Some of the more prevalent antitrust violations we see in the healthcare industry include:
- Sham Peer Review & Group Boycotts – Antitrust laws are concerned with abuses of market power by dominant firms. As any doctor who has ever dealt with an insurance company or large hospital chain understands, such abuses are everywhere. For example, many hospitals abuse the peer review process to punish doctors who are also economic competitors. Other types of group boycott involve the use of long-term “exclusive” contracts and manipulation of referrals to keep certain doctors out of the market.
- Price-Fixing and Market Allocation – Along similar lines, a handful of payers and established providers may also attempt to actually fix reimbursement levels and “allocate” certain groups of patients among themselves. Such conduct has always been considered a “per se” violation of the antitrust laws.
- Mergers That Lessen Competition – When behind-the-scenes collusion is not enough, some dominant firms will attempt to merge outright, thereby permanently eliminating competition between them. While not all mergers are illegal, those that can reasonably be expected to lessen competition to the detriment of consumers may run afoul of the antitrust laws.
Antitrust Specialists Focusing on Healthcare
Antitrust litigation often involves multiple overlapping issues of state and federal law. The New Jersey Antitrust Act covers much the same ground as the federal Sherman and Clayton Antitrust Acts. But depending on the facts and circumstances of a given case, certain laws may be more favorable to your position.
This is why it is critical to work with an experienced New Jersey antitrust attorney who intimately understands both the intricacies of antitrust law and the healthcare industry itself. Just as you would never perform a medical procedure outside of your own specialty, you should not trust a major undertaking like antitrust litigation to a firm that does not specialize in such litigation. Call the Law Offices of George M. Sanders, P.C., today at (312) 624-7642 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation so we can learn more about your unique situation and develop a strategy to help you fight illegal conduct affecting your interests.