Kohn, Swift & Graf’s antitrust lawyers represent individuals and businesses harmed by illegal monopolies / monopolization. Monopoly power is the ability to completely or substantially eliminate competition within a market.

Some monopolies arise naturally, without deliberate intent on the part of the monopolists. This can occur, for example, when consumers prefer a particular company’s product or service over those offered by other companies. This type of monopoly power is legal. Illegal monopolization only occurs when a monopolist intends to create or maintain monopoly power using anti-competitive means.

Monopoly / Monopolization Lawsuits

Monopolization achieved through intentional anti-competitive activity violates federal and state antitrust laws. Antitrust laws also prohibit attempts to monopolize through anti-competitive behavior (attempted monopolization).

Monopolization activities prohibited by the Sherman Act include:

•  the deliberate creation of or attempt to create a monopoly, and

•  the deliberate maintenance of or attempt to maintain an already existing monopoly

Thus, even when a monopoly naturally or accidentally arises, the monopolist’s intentional preservation of (or attempt to preserve) that monopoly power can still constitute an antitrust violation.

Conspiracies to Monopolize

Illegal monopolies can be formed by a single person or entity or by two or more persons or entities that conspire to monopolize. Conspiracies to monopolize can be effected through one or more anti-competitive activities. These include:

•  group boycotts

 price fixing

•  tying / bundling

 exclusive dealing

 market division / customer allocation

 price discrimination

 bid rigging

 pay for delay

Monopolies attempted or created by single businesses or by conspirators do not need to reach full market control to be actionable antitrust violations. Courts often find significant and lasting market power of less than 100% sufficient to constitute a monopoly.

Contact an Antitrust Lawyer

Monopolization damages businesses and consumers by removing free competition from markets and subjecting consumers to higher than fair market prices. If you sustained monetary loss due to an attempted or effected monopoly, contact Kohn, Swift & Graf for an evaluation of your case without charge.