Monopoly is a great board game and one that has entertained families for decades. The game revolves around pieces jumping around a board buying up properties. Once enough of the same types of property are bought a monopoly can be formed whereby players can begin charging double for landing on their monopoly. This innocent game is reflective of a real life monopoly whereby one company is allowed to charge outrageously high prices because it controls a majority, if not all of the market share.
Originally monopolies were found all over the United States but as time went on their detrimental effects were realized quickly. Monopolies had a power that no other corporation had before it; the power to set a price to whatever they felt it should be and consumers were forced to oblige. Without any competitors to turn to monopolies ruled over entire industries with iron fists forcing consumer’s to empty their wallets and leaving them no alternative. This was until the early 1900’s with the utilization of the Sherman Act, which banned monopolistic behavior. Monopolies have been struggling to elude government sanctions from that time on.
Both the government and other businesses enforce laws against monopolies. It is the civic duty of every business to report and prevent a monopoly from taking over when deemed illegal. Lens.com has done just that in a filing a lawsuit in U.S. District Court for Nevada against 1-800 Contacts Inc.
Reportedly 1-800 Contacts is the world’s greatest seller of contacts but success alone doesn’t make for a monopoly or a lawsuit against one. Going after a monopoly requires finding illegal behavior whereby a company forces its success through dishonest and strong-arm means rather than good marketing and product alone. Within the lawsuit 1-800 Contacts is accused of abuse of process and unfair competition.
Abuse of process is a means whereby people use the courts improperly to file suits perhaps to cause delay or duress. In this case Lens.com claim that 1-800 Contacts has filed frivolous lawsuits against it in an effort to reduce Lens.com productivity and cause duress over trademarks. Abuse of Process can be used many different ways as a means to unsettle opponents.
Unfair competition is broad term that encompasses many aspects relating directly with antitrust laws. It includes practices that limit the fairness of competition and the removal of conditions that apply to all competitors and changing them as to apply to a select group. These conditions don’t take on an illegal form however until they are conducted intentionally with the hopes to gain an advantage over competitors. Lens.com cites 1-800 Contacts as restricting information that is not eligible to be restricted. Business can be difficult but if it is not fair then it is not fair and that becomes the queue for the government to step in and hammer things out.
A full article can be found here: Nevada lawsuit alleges monopoly practices by contact lens firm
Our law firm does not represent anybody in this incident. The commentary is for educational purposes only. If you or someone you know has been a victim of illegal activity against your business and would like to be represented by a Las Vegas Business Lawyer, contact our office for a free confidential case review and receive a response within hours. Call Toll Free 866-414-0400.