Legal Resources - Statutes Relating to Competition Mission
Clayton Act (15 U.S.C. §§ 12-27, as amended)
The Commission is charged under Sections 3, 7 and 8 of this Act with preventing and eliminating unlawful tying contracts, corporate mergers and acquisitions, and interlocking directorates. The statute was amended by the Robinson-Patman Act, 49 Stat. 1528, 15 U.S.C. §§ 13, 13b, and 21a, under which the Commission is authorized to prevent certain specified practices involving discriminatory pricing and product promotion
Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 (15 U.S.C. § 18a, as amended) (2001 Amendments)
This Act amended the Clayton Act by requiring companies to file premerger notifications with the Federal Trade Commission and the Antitrust Division of the Justice Department. The Act establishes waiting periods that must elapse before certain acquisitions or tender offers may be consummated and authorizes the enforcement agencies to stay those periods until the companies provide certain additional information about the proposed transaction.
Webb-Pomerene Act (15 U.S.C. §§ 61-66, as amended)
Under this statute, the Commission is responsible for receiving certain filings from export trade associations organized under the Act; investigating association operations that may adversely affect competition within the United States; making recommendations to associations for business readjustments deemed necessary to comply with the law; and, where appropriate, making recommendations to the Attorney General for law enforcement action.
Deepwater Port Act of 1974 (33 U.S.C. §§ 1501-1524, as amended)
Under Section 7 of this Act (33 U.S.C. § 1506), the Attorney General and the Federal Trade Commission provide reports to Secretary of Transportation assessing the expected competitive effects of proposed licenses for deepwater ports.
Defense Production Act of 1950 (50 U.S.C. App. §§ 2061-2169, as amended) Section 708 of this Act (50 U.S.C. App. §§ 2158, 2158a) requires the Commission and the Department of Justice to participate in developing, implementing, and monitoring voluntary agreements established by oil companies to deal with emergency domestic oil shortages.
Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act Amendments of 1978 (43 U.S.C. § 1337)
Under Section 205(b) of this Act, the Attorney General, in consultation with the Commission, provides reports to the Secretary of the Interior respecting the expected competitive effects of proposed leases for the extraction of oil and gas from the Outer Continental Shelf.
Deep Seabed Hard Minerals Act (30 U.S.C. §§ 1401-1473, as amended)
Under Section 103(d) of this Act (30 U.S.C. § 1413(d)), the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in the Department of Commerce must provide the Attorney General and the Federal Trade Commission with an opportunity to review and make recommendations concerning the antitrust implications of proposed licenses for the extraction of minerals from deep seabed sites.
National Cooperative Research and Production Act of 1993 (15 U.S.C. §§ 4301-4306)
This Act establishes certain protections for any joint research and development venture as to which a voluntary, prior written notification has been filed with the Attorney General and the Federal Trade Commission. Specifically, in any antitrust suit brought under the Clayton Act relating to the conduct of such a venture, recovery by the plaintiff is limited to actual damages, interest, and reasonable attorney's fees. Subject to certain restrictions relating to the location of facilities and the nationality of participants, similar protections apply to joint ventures for the production of a product, process or service.
International Antitrust Enforcement Assistance Act of 1994 (15 U.S.C. §§ 46, 57b-1, 1311, 1312, 6201, 6201 note, 6202-6212)
The Act authorizes the Federal Trade Commission and the Justice Department to enter into mutual assistance agreements with foreign antitrust authorities. Under such agreements, U.S. and foreign authorities may share, subject to certain restrictions, evidence of antitrust violations and provide each other with investigatory assistance.
Interstate Commerce Commission Termination Act of 1995 (codified at scattered sections of the U.S. Code, particularly 49 U.S.C. §§ 10101-11917)
Under Section 102(a) of the Act (codified in relevant part at 49 U.S.C. § 10706(e)(1)), the Federal Trade Commission, in consultation with the Department of Justice, is required to file with the Surface Transportation Board within the Department of Transportation periodic reports that assess and make recommendations concerning possible anticompetitive features of rate agreements among common carriers.
Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003
(Pub. L. No. 108-173, 117 Stat. 2066, codified in relevant part at 42 U.S.C. § 1395w-101 note (section 110), 21 U.S.C. § 355 note (sections 1111-1118), 21 U.S.C. § 355(j)5 (section 1102))
Section 110 of this Act requires the FTC to study and to issue a report on differences in payment amounts for pharmacy services provided to enrollees in group health plans that utilize pharmacy benefit managers, along with recommendations regarding any need for legislation to ensure the fiscal integrity of the voluntary prescription drug benefit program. Sections 1111-1118 require agreements between brand-name and generic pharmaceutical companies regarding the manufacture, marketing, and sale of generic versions of brand-name drug products to be filed with the Commission and DOJ. In addition, it requires the filing of certain agreements between generic drug manufacturers if both have filed certain types of applications with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the same brand-name drug product. Section 1102 further provides that the 180-day period of marketing exclusivity given to certain generic drug applicants will be considered forfeited if there is a binding determination in a FTC or DOJ action that an agreement with another applicant violated antitrust laws.
Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2004 (amending the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act) (Pub. L. No. 108-199, codified in relevant part at 16 U.S.C. § 1862)
Section 801 of this Act instructs the Secretary of Commerce to implement a cooperative program for crab fisheries of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands, in which individuals receive processing quotas. The Act further specifies that it does not constitute a waiver of antitrust laws and instructs the Secretary of Commerce, in consultation with the DOJ and the FTC, to implement a mandatory information collection and review process to enable the DOJ and the FTC to determine if anyone receiving a quota under the program has committed any acts that violate any of the antitrust laws.
Standards Development Organization Act of 2004 (codified to 15 U.S.C. §§ 4301-4306)
This Act amends provisions of the National Cooperative Research and Production Act of 1993 to extend the same antitrust protections to standards development organizations (SDOs) while those organizations are engaged in standards development activity. The Act provides that the antitrust rule of reason applies to SDOs while they are engaged in standards development activities. The Act also gives SDOs the opportunity to limit their antitrust liability for standards development activities to actual, as opposed to treble, damages and provides special rules for attorneys' fees in any antitrust case challenging a SDO’s standards development activity. SDOs must file a proper notification with the FTC and the DOJ to obtain the liability-limiting protections provided by the Act.
Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Act (Pub. L. No. 109-417)
Section 405 of this Act creates a limited exemption from the antitrust laws for entities creating pandemic and biodefense drugs and vaccines, and requires the FTC and the Department of Justice to report bi-annually to Congress on the use of the exemption.
Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act (Pub. L. No. 109-435)
Section 404 of this Act, among other things, makes the United States Postal Service subject to FTC enforcement under the FTC Act with respect to unfair methods of competition. The Act also requires the FTC to issue a report concerning federal and state laws that apply differently to the U.S. Postal Service with respect to competitive mail products and to private companies providing similar products.