Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Limits on Antitrust Damage Exposure for Cooperating Cartelists Extended

This posting was written by Jeffrey May, Editor of CCH Trade Regulation Reporter.

Provisions in the Antitrust Criminal Penalties Enforcement and Reform Act (ACPERA) of 2004 that limit the civil liability in private antitrust actions of cartel participants who are accepted into the Department of Justice Antitrust Division's leniency program have been extended for ten years.

Legislation extending the provisions through June 22, 2020, was signed into law on June 9. The text of ACPERA, as amended by Public Law 111-190, begins at CCH Trade Regulation Reporter ¶27,750.

Under the Antitrust Division’s corporate leniency program, a company is protected from criminal prosecution for antitrust violations if it is first to come forward to advise the Antitrust Division of an antitrust offense and cooperates with the government’s investigation.

The ACPERA provides the added incentive of reducing liability in private damages suits to actual damages rather than treble damages. Under the law, the cooperating company must also cooperate in the private litigation in order for the de-trebling provision to apply.

For futher details about the legislation, see Trade Regulation Talk, May 28, 2010 posting.

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