Edited by Albert A. Foer and Jonathan W. Cuneo
Marcus Glader1 and Peter Alstergren2 Introduction Since 1993, the Swedish Competition Act has expressly provided that private parties may bring damages claims for competition law violations. This damages provision has not only survived subsequent legislative amendments, it has also been modified to increase the possibilities of bringing such actions. In 2003, Sweden also enacted the Group Proceedings Act, which allows private group actions for damages. Despite these legislative tools, private damages case law based on competition law violations remains very sparse. Most of the few private damages cases that have made it to court have been settled out of court.3 At present only a single case, which related to an abuse of a dominant position, has resulted in court-awarded damages under the Competition Act’s damages provision (currently under appeal). However, a number of damages actions based on cartel violations are pending, and many expect private damages to play a more important role in the future. This chapter outlines the Swedish legislative framework for private enforcement of competition law, discusses the interaction between public and private competition law enforcement, and describes the types of private actions (including group actions) that are available. Practical considerations relating to gathering evidence, standards of proof and the determination of damages are also addressed. Finally, we conclude by commenting on the European Commission’s (Commission) recent regulatory initiatives from a Swedish perspective. 1. The role of attorneys There are no general limitations under the Code of Conduct of the Swedish Bar Association (or the official Commentary thereto)...
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