A trust is a very large organization, usually a corporation, without any real competition. And while many industries are defined by just a few large players (Microsoft, for example), an illegal trust is one that actively seeks to crush its competition in order to secure an unfair advantage. There is no clear line in the sand for what constitutes an illegal trust, but federal and state antitrust laws establish guidelines to help prevent the formation of trusts or break them up if necessary.
Most antitrust regulation is done at the federal level, particularly since trusts tend to be national or multinational in scope. Typically, state courts will handle antitrust cases that are more localized and don't involve interstate commerce.
Oklahoma Antitrust Law at a Glance
The Oklahoma Antitrust Reform Act prohibits unfair restraint of trade through monopolistic activity. The term monopoly power is statutorily defined as "the power to control market prices or exclude competition," while monopolistic activity involves:
Oklahoma statute also prohibits price discrimination for the purpose of hurting the competition.
Additional details of Oklahoma antitrust law are listed in the following chart.
|Antitrust Code Section||Oklahoma Antitrust Reform Act Tit. 79 §§201, et seq.|
|Is a Private Lawsuit Possible?||Yes; attorney general power to enforce (treble damages and attorney's fees)
|Time Limit to Bring Claim||4 yrs.|
|Can a Successful Plaintiff Recover Attorneys' Fees?||Yes|
Note: State laws are never set in stone and may change at any time, usually through the enactment of new statutes or the rulings of higher courts (both state and federal). Make sure you contact an Oklahoma antitrust and trade regulation attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
Basics of Federal Antitrust Law
Under the federal Sherman Act and Clayton Act, efforts to restrict trade are kept in check by restricting certain mergers. See the Federal Trade Commission's Guide to Antitrust Laws to learn more.
Research the Law
Oklahoma Antitrust Law: Related Resources
Contact a qualified attorney.