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Clifford Chance

Clifford Chance


And Then There Was One: DOJ Brings First Criminal Charges in Case Alleging Anticompetitive Employment Practices

December 11, 2020

The U.S. Department of Justice Antitrust Division has made good on its promise to criminally prosecute anticompetitive employment practices. On December 9, 2020, the Division brought criminal charges against the former owner of a health care staffing company for allegedly conspiring to fix wages between March and August 2017. The case represents the first criminal indictment of an individual or corporation for anticompetitive conduct relating to labor markets. But it does not come out of the blue; rather, the U.S. federal antitrust authorities have, in recent years, warned they would rigorously pursue cartel conduct in employment markets. This latest development underscores the need for antitrust compliance training for human resources departments.

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