Guidance for third parties in competition law investigations

OFT guidelines (36 pages, PDF) on the involvement of third parties in investigations under the Competition Act 1998, Article 81 and Article 82.

The OFT intends for certain third parties to be granted the status of a Formal Complainant. This would provide a third party with access to information about the case and opportunities to comment on case documents such as draft non-infringement decisions and Statements of Objections. The guidelines specify a wide array of information that the OFT requires to be included in a complaint in order for a third party to be treated as a Formal Complainant. This includes information about company details, market shares and effects on customers and consumers; but complainants with a legitimate complaint will not necessarily be in a position to provide the specified information. The guidelines do not state OFT's policy towards instances where such information cannot be provided.

Because of the generic nature of the guidelines, the information requested is likely to fall short of what is necessary to provide an effective direction to the OFT's investigation team. Reckon offers a complaint preparation service to help complainants that wish to go beyond the formal requirements set by the OFT and express their grievances in a form that can provide a clear scope for the investigation.

Filed under Guidance, OFT.

Reckon LLP is an economics consultancy with expertise in data analysis, economic regulation and competition law.

About Reckon