WHY ASSOCIATED GENERAL CONTRACTORS SHOULD BE USED TO ASSESS STANDING IN CARTWRIGHT ACT CASES
By Anna M. Fabish1
Courts are far from united in evaluating antitrust standing for indirect purchasers under California’s antitrust lawsâan inconsistency the California Supreme Court has yet to address. The solution, however, has been available for decades: the multi-factor analysis set forth by the United States Supreme Court in Associated General Contractors v. Cal. State Council of Carpenters ("AGC").2 The decision provides a nuanced framework for assessing antitrust standing in all Cartwright Act claims, includingâindeed, especiallyâclaims by indirect purchasers.
The underlying principles of AGC, as well as the results of courts applying the AGC factors to Cartwright Act claims to date,3 reveal that AGC and the Cartwright Act are consistent and complementary sources of law. AGC is persuasive federal precedent that canâand, in the interest of helping courts navigate the complex questions of antitrust standing for indirect purchasers, shouldâbe applied to Cartwright Act claims.