Whether analytically correct or not, the rule of Illinois Brick Co.
v. Illinois,1 which bars indirect purchaser actions under the Sherman
Act, struck many people as wrong, so they sought a legislative
solution. When Congress failed to take action to remove the Illinois
Brick bar, the states took it upon themselves to do so. The states
crafted a variety of different approaches, with significant differences
on a number of issues.
We are quickly approaching the fortieth year of the post-Illinois
Brick era. After an initially slow start, indirect purchaser litigation
continues to mushroom, the natural byproduct of increased cartel
enforcement that served up a number of indictments and guilty pleas,
with follow-on direct purchaser actions. Many, if not most, of the
indirect purchaser cases that followed have been litigated in state
court, but after the passage of the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005
(CAFA)2 indirect purchaser litigation plays a significant role in
federal courts.
This Handbook pulls together the developments in indirect
purchaser jurisprudence. It begins with an analysis of the Illinois
Brick decision, along with the federal, state, and scholarly responses.
Then it considers questions of liability and standing for indirect
purchaser claims. It reviews procedural aspects of indirect purchaser
litigationjurisdiction, discovery, case management, and class
certification issues. It also gets to the bottom linedamages and
settlements. Finally, it looks northward to seek lessons from
Canada’s experience with indirect purchaser claims.
This Handbook takes no position on whether Illinois Brick was
rightly decided or whether the benefits of indirect purchaser litigation
are worth its costs. Rather, this Handbook is intended as a guide for
practitioners and courts, working in the world as it is today.
One chapter and one appendix describe the substance of indirect
purchaser law. Chapter II describes the various responses to the
Illinois Brick decisionstate and federal, legislative and judicial.
Appendix A discusses the state of the law in each of the fifty states
and three other jurisdictions.
Two chapters discuss the issue of who can litigate and where.
Chapter III analyzes the concepts of liability and standing in indirect
purchaser law. Chapter IV outlines state and federal jurisdiction over
1. 431 U.S. 720 (1977).
2. 28 U.S.C. § 1332 (2005).

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