Full Slate of State Attorneys General Urges Congress to Strengthen State Antitrust Enforcement Abilities

  • The National Association of Attorneys General (“NAAG”) sent a letter to Congress, signed by a bipartisan group of 52 AGs, calling on legislators to provide state AGs with the same venue selection rights as federal agencies by passing the State Antitrust Enforcement Venue Act of 2021.
  • The letter notes that, under current law, state antitrust enforcement actions may be transferred to a multidistrict litigation at defendant’s request, causing significant delays and potential joinder with other lawsuits brought by private plaintiffs. But enforcement actions filed by the federal government cannot be transferred to a multidistrict litigation, thus avoiding its inefficiencies. The letter argues that state antitrust enforcement actions should be subject to the same protections from transfer as those brought by the federal government because states play an essential role in enforcing competition laws in the United States and should have the same freedom as federal enforcers in deciding where, when, and how to prosecute their cases.
  • As previously reported, NAAGalso recently urged Congress to provide funding needed to enhance state antitrust capabilities so that state AG offices can keep pace with the growth of the national economy, which has resulted in a greater number of complex and resource-intensive antitrust enforcement actions requiring additional staffing and financing.