D.C. Law 23-199. Antitrust Remedies Amendment Act of 2020.

D.C. Law 23-199. Antitrust Remedies Amendment Act of 2020.

AN ACT

To amend Chapter 45 of Title 28 of the District of Columbia Official Code to expand the remedies available in civil actions brought by the Attorney General for antitrust violations, including by authorizing civil penalties for violations committed by individuals and legal entities.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE COUNCIL OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, That this act may be cited as the "Antitrust Remedies Amendment Act of 2020".

Sec. 2. Chapter 45 of Title 28 of the District of Columbia Official Code is amended as follows:

Amend § 28-4505

(a) Section 28-4505 is amended as follows:

(1) Subsection (a) is amended by striking the phrase "Corporation Counsel" both times it appears and inserting the phrase "Attorney General" in its place.

(2) Subsection (b)(4)(B) is amended by striking the phrase "an assistant corporation counsel" inserting the phrase "a designee of the Attorney General" in its place.

(3) Subsection (e) is amended by striking the phrase "a natural person" both times it appears and inserting the phrase "an individual" in its place.

(4) Subsection (g) is amended as follows:

(A) Paragraph (2) is amended by striking the phrase "The assistant corporation counsel" and inserting the phrase "The designee of the Attorney General" in its place.

(B) Paragraph (3) is amended by striking the phrase "the assistant corporation counsel" and inserting the phrase "the designee of the Attorney General" in its place.

(C) Paragraph (4) is amended by striking the phrase "the assistant corporation counsel" wherever it appears and inserting the phrase "the designee of the Attorney General" in its place.

(D) Paragraph (5) is amended by striking the phrase "or assistant corporation counsel" and inserting the phrase "or designee of the Attorney General" in its place.

(E) Paragraph (6) is amended to read as follows:

"(6) Upon request, the designee of the Attorney General shall furnish a copy of the transcript at no cost to the witness only: except, that the Attorney General may for good cause limit such witness to inspection of the official transcript of the witness's testimony.".

(F) Paragraph (7) is amended by striking the phrase "the Corporation Counsel" and inserting the phrase "the Attorney General" in its place.

(5) Subsection (h) is amended by striking the phrase "the Corporation Counsel" and inserting the phrase "the Attorney General" in its place.

(6) Subsection (i) is amended by striking the phrase "the Corporation Counsel" and inserting the phrase "the Attorney General" in its place.

(7) Subsection (k) is amended by striking the phrase "the Corporation Counsel" both times it appears and inserting the phrase "the Attorney General" in its place.

Amend § 28-4506

(b) Section 28-4506 is amended by striking the phrase "The Corporation Counsel" and inserting the phrase "The Attorney General" in its place.

Amend § 28-4507

(c) Section 28-4507 is amended as follows:

(1) Subsection (a) is amended to read as follows:

"(a)(1) Whenever the District government is injured in its business or property by a violation of this chapter, the Attorney General may, without prejudice to the right of the District to bring similar or identical actions under any other statute, bring a civil action, in the name of the District, in any court of competent jurisdiction.

"(2)(A) Remedies in actions brought pursuant to paragraph (1) of this subsection shall be one or more of the following:

"(i) Not more than treble damages;

"(ii) Other appropriate injunctive or equitable relief, including restitution or an order that any profits, gain, gross receipts, or other benefit derived from the violation be disgorged and paid to the District; and

"(iii) Civil penalties.

"(B) In any action brought pursuant to paragraph (1) of this subsection, the court may award the District the relief sought and the cost of suit, including reasonable attorney's fees.".

(2) Subsection (b) is amended to read as follows:

"(b)(1) Whenever an individual residing in the District is injured in the individual's property by a violation of this chapter, the Attorney General may bring a civil action, in the name of the District as parens patriae, in any court of competent jurisdiction.

"(2) Remedies in actions brought pursuant to paragraph (1) of this subsection shall be one or more of the remedies provided in subsection (a)(2) of this section.

"(3) Monetary relief recovered on behalf of individuals in an action pursuant to paragraph (1) of this subsection shall be distributed in such manner as the court may authorize, according to procedures approved by the court, except that any distribution procedures approved shall first afford each individual a reasonable opportunity to secure the individual's appropriate portion of the net monetary relief.".

(3) A new subsection (b-1) is added to read as follows:

"(b-1)(1) Any individual who knowingly commits any violation of this chapter shall be liable for civil penalties not to exceed $100,000.

"(2) Any person, other than an individual in paragraph (1) of this subsection, that knowingly commits any violation of this chapter shall be liable for civil penalties not to exceed $1 million.".

(4) Subsection (c) is amended as follows:

(A) Paragraph (1) is amended to read as follows:

"(1) In any action brought pursuant to subsection (b) of this section, the Attorney General shall, at such times, in such manner, and with such content as the court may direct, cause notice to be given by publication. If the court finds that notice given solely by publication would deny due process of law to any individual, the court shall direct further notice to such individual according to the circumstances of the case.".

(B) Paragraph (2) is amended by striking the word "person" both times it appears and inserting the word "individual" in its place.

(5) Subsection (d) is amended by striking the phrase "persons on" and inserting the phrase "individuals on" in its place.

Amend § 28-4512

(d) Section 28-4512(a) is amended by striking the phrase "the Corporation Counsel" and inserting the phrase "the Attorney General" in its place.

Amend § 28-4513

(e) Section 28-4513 is amended by striking the phrase "the Corporation Counsel" and inserting the phrase "the Attorney General" in its place.

Sec. 3. Fiscal impact statement.

The Council adopts the fiscal impact statement in the committee report as the fiscal impact statement required by section 4a of the General Legislative Procedures Act of 1975, approved October 16, 2006 (120 Stat. 2038; D.C. Official Code § 1-301.47a).

Sec. 4. Effective date.

This act shall take effect following approval by the Mayor (or in the event of veto by the Mayor, action by the Council to override the veto), a 30-day period of congressional review as provided in section 602(c)(1) of the District of Columbia Home Rule Act, approved December 24, 1973 (87 Stat. 813; D.C. Official Code § 1-206.02(c)(1)), and publication in the District of Columbia Register.