17 Jan 2022
Author : InfoPro Community Manager
Antitrust policy and enforcement remain in the spotlight for 2022. Are you ready for a busy year?
Throughout 2021, many commentators forecast that U.S. antitrust law could be nearing a watershed moment, propelled by a perfect storm of converging forces and events that may suggest the possibility of significant changes to antitrust law and practice ahead. As antitrust practitioners continue to monitor the course of these developments to determine which, if any, will make landfall in 2022, firms are shoring up capacity to counsel clients through heightened antitrust risk and uncertainty. In response to the surge of incoming antitrust matters, as of November 2021, the firms of The Am Law 200® had made a total of 117 antitrust lateral hires, 45% more than the previous four-year average for the same period.
Practitioners anticipate that heavy workloads and demands on their time will continue as new attorneys ramp up, that thorny substantive issues will arise, and that staying informed of new developments will be mission-critical in 2022. LexisNexis® offers a suite of antitrust and competition resources that enhance productivity and deliver guidance from experienced practitioners, as well as robust and sophisticated analysis and unparalleled current awareness to help you and your antitrust attorneys excel this year.
A look back at 2021: A few factors that shaped the antitrust landscape
Among many key developments last year that placed antitrust in a lingering spotlight, President Biden signaled his administration’s commitment to more aggressive antitrust policy and enforcement by appointing several well-known, reform-minded thought leaders to key posts—and by issuing a remarkably sweeping executive order to promote competition in the American economy. The executive order outlined specific directives and requests for action to multiple federal agencies, including the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice (DOJ), involving more than 70 initiatives targeting problematic areas, notably in certain industries and labor markets, as well as in and mergers and acquisitions (M&A).
Meanwhile on the Hill, House and Senate lawmakers introduced dozens of antitrust-related bills in 2021, with a number of those proposals advancing and gaining traction. More legislative efforts undoubtedly will follow this year.
At the FTC, under the leadership of its newly appointed progressive Chair Lina Khan, the agency implemented a series of controversial and uncertainty-inspiring changes, including rescinding key guidance, upending several established merger policies and procedures, and asserting its intention to explore expanded use of its broader enforcement powers and rulemaking authority in competition.
In the courts, a spate of high-profile enforcement actions brought by the DOJ and FTC involve novel issues, and active cases against so-called dominant technology companies could break new and landmark legal ground when ultimately decided.
While all this was happening, 2021 also proved to be a record-breaking year in global M&A deal value and volume. U.S. antitrust agencies saw a record-breaking total number of premerger (HSR) filings that placed stress on agency staff and on antitrust attorneys. As of this writing, despite some headwinds, there is no obvious indication of a decline in the appetite for M&A or a reversal of these trends.
LexisNexis resources can help attorneys weather the workload and turbulence of the current climate
Practical Guidance, integrated in the Lexis+® experience and available via the legacy Lexis® platform, delivers insightful, actionable content authored by experienced practitioners. This content can help firms and attorneys successfully meet the challenges of busy, growth practice areas like antitrust.
Practical Guidance for Antitrust provides timesaving materials covering a wide range of antitrust topics and tasks to assist seasoned antitrust attorneys in working most productively. This can free them to spend more time with clients, analyze complex and novel issues arising in the evolving regulatory landscape, and focus on other high-value activities. With clear and concise practice notes, richly annotated templates and clauses, checklists, case charts, trackers and numerous other tools and resources, Practical Guidance can help laterals hit the ground running and equip attorneys newer to the practice to assume responsibilities more quickly and confidently.
Below you can see the broad range of topics and tasks Practical Guidance for Antitrust practice encompasses.
As an example of some of the diverse types of timesaving materials available in Practical Guidance for Antitrust, here is just a small sampling of the content found under its Mergers and Acquisitions topic:
Lexis+ and Lexis: easy access to in-depth analysis of antitrust and competition topics
Within Lexis+ (and legacy Lexis), you’ll find a vast collection of leading and authoritative secondary analytical materials and practice guides from Matthew Bender®, the ABA® Antitrust Law Section, Getting the Deal Through®, and other trusted publishers that offer robust insight on the nuances of antitrust law and practice. This provides in-depth references on critical topics underlying recent and emerging developments. Top titles include the ABA Antitrust Law Developments (along with more than 40 other ABA publications on antitrust and related topics), Matthew Bender Antitrust Laws and Trade Regulation and Federal Antitrust Law (Kintner), among scores of others.
To locate on-point antitrust and related analytical sources, simply use Explore in Lexis+ as shown below or follow the same path in Lexis. Navigate to View our Practice Centers, and select Antitrust | Competition | Trade Regulation from the resulting screen.
Then, expand the Secondary Sources menu to review titles by topic and/or publisher.
Specialized current awareness: Stay on the cutting edge of antitrust developments and trends
The Lexis and Lexis+ services offer a unique aggregation of current awareness resources for antitrust practitioners, including the exclusive, practice-specific coverage of Law360® Competition and Mealey’s® Daily News Update – Antitrust/Unfair Competition, as well as relevant coverage that may be found in The Wall Street Journal®, New York Law Journal® (and similar publications from ALM®), and other titles among 26,000+ news and legal news publications. Law360 Competition content may also be found on the Law360 platform, an environment optimized specifically for news consumption with a variety of elements to enhance current awareness. (See this recent feature tracking key antitrust legislation).
From Lexis+ or Lexis, subscribers can also access the highly specialized, exclusive coverage of antitrust regulatory developments provided by MLex® and FTC:Watch™ via links found on the Antitrust | Competition | Trade Regulation Practice Center page (shown below).
The global MLex team of antitrust specialists provides exclusive insight and analysis that explains how businesses will be impacted by regulatory risk—often before the information is available through other media channels. FTC:Watch is the nation’s leading independent newsletter focused exclusively on antitrust, consumer protection and privacy enforcement developments initiated by the FTC, the Antitrust Division of the DOJ and state attorneys general. FTC:Watch provides the inside story on policies, programs and personnel at the agencies, as well as coverage of civil and criminal investigations. It is published electronically twice a month, 22 times a year.
Among the valuable advanced features found on the MLex platform are capabilities to customize content sets, save searches, set alerts and access aggregated “Portfolios.” Portfolios bring together related content on a specific topic, such as an M&A deal, regulatory investigation, legislation or policy development, with links to MLex coverage and official statements, allowing a quick and easy way get to up-to-speed on recent and historical content.
Below you’ll see an example and one path to a related Portfolio. Note that the one-click Alerts button at the top enables automatic updates when new content is added.
These forward-looking resources enable attorneys to anticipate, manage and mitigate evolving antitrust risks to clients—well ahead of the curve.
For more information on how the LexisNexis services can support the specific needs of your organization’s antitrust and competition practitioners, please contact your LexisNexis account representative to arrange a bespoke presentation.
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