What Are Antitrust Claims?
Even when one product or service provider is preferred by the masses, that is not necessarily a violation of the antitrust laws. But antitrust claims have merit—and are important tools to protect consumers and ensure compliance with the law—when market players engage in blatant anticompetitive tactics or deceptive collusion.
Corporations can be liable for different types of antitrust violations:
- Monopolization: When a dominant seller gains or attempts to gain greater market power through anticompetitive tactics that could foreclose the market to competition and inhibit consumer access to pro-competitive benefits.
- Market Division or Allocation: An illegal agreement between competitors who strategically divide markets among themselves, segmented by consumers, products, or territories.
- Price Fixing: An illegal agreement between competitors or between sellers and buyers that sets products or services at a fixed price, with the intent of mutual benefit.
- Bid Rigging: An illegal form of collusion in which competitors pre-determine who will receive the winning contract bid.
- Boycotts: An illegal agreement between competitors to refuse sale to particular consumers to prevent those consumers from purchasing the products or services.
- Tying: When a dominant seller of a product will only sell that product to consumers who also agree to purchase another product (the “tied” product) from the seller.
Antitrust Claims We Handle
The antitrust laws protect consumers from predatory business practices and ensure fair competition for all businesses in the market. At Keller Lenkner, we believe competition stimulates innovation, sparks improvements of products and services, and leads to more efficient means of delivery and production. Our team has experience litigating a wide variety of cases on behalf of competing businesses (who deserve an equal playing field) and consumers (who have a right to fair prices, more service choices, and better products).
Case Highlight: Antitrust Class Action Against Facebook
Keller Lenkner represents a putative class of Facebook users in a class-action lawsuit against Facebook, Inc. for violating federal antitrust laws and California law.
The suit alleges that the company illegally obtained a monopoly by exploiting user data and deceiving consumers about data privacy. According to the complaint, Facebook did not achieve its monopoly through innovation or vigorous competition. Instead—and despite its public pledge to protect user privacy—Facebook lied to users and violated their trust in a scheme to build its empire. Facebook also acquired technology from smaller firms that it used to track consumer activity across the internet so it could identify and target competitors, with the intention of destroying or acquiring them.
Our lawsuit seeks to end Facebook’s misrepresentations around its privacy practices and anticompetitive acquisition conduct, require Facebook to engage in third-party auditing of its privacy practices, and require Facebook to divest assets (such as Instagram and WhatsApp).
Case Highlight: Antitrust Litigation Against Google
Keller Lenkner represents the State of Texas in its antitrust litigation against Google.
Filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, the suit alleges that Google monopolized products and services used by advertisers and publishers in online-display advertising. The complaint also alleges that Google engaged in false, misleading, and deceptive acts while selling, buying, and auctioning online-display ads. These anticompetitive and deceptive practices demonstrably diminished publishers’ ability to monetize content, increased advertisers’ costs to advertise, and directly harmed consumers.
Google also entered into an unlawful agreement with rival Facebook to maintain control of the marketplace for header bidding. Collaboration of such magnitude between two competitors flies in the face of the antitrust laws.