by Mark Alcorn
Although many business owners and managers pay little or no attention to antitrust laws, these laws pose a substantial threat to both businesses and their leaders. Antitrust laws are complex and confusing, and violations of antitrust laws can arise from seemingly harmless conduct. Worse yet, Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and Department of Justice (DOJ) enforcement resources are virtually unlimited, while very few individuals or businesses have the financial resources to defend themselves against a powerful government agency. Indeed, in a recent case, the FTC attacked two Arizona dentists for agreeing between themselves not to do business with a particular insurance company. The FTC sued and ended its assault only after both dentists were financially ruined, and their misdeeds published nationally. Antitrust liability is NOT just for big business anymore.