MONOPOLIES AND TRADE PRACTICES
IDAHO COMPETITION ACT
48-108. Civil actions and settlements by the attorney general. (1) Whenever the attorney general has reason to believe that any person is engaging, has engaged, or is about to engage in any act or practice declared unlawful by this chapter, the attorney general may bring an action in the name of the state against that person:
(a) To obtain a declaratory judgment that the act or practice violates the provisions of this chapter;
(b) To enjoin any act or practice that violates the provisions of this chapter by issuance of a temporary restraining order or preliminary or permanent injunction, without bond, upon the giving of appropriate notice;
(c) To recover on behalf of the state and its agencies actual damages or restitution;
(d) To recover civil penalties of up to fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) per violation of section 48-104 or 48-105, Idaho Code, or any injunction, judgment or consent order issued or entered into pursuant to this chapter and reasonable expenses, investigative costs and attorney’s fees; and
(e) To obtain an order requiring divestiture of any assets:
(i) Acquired in violation of section 48-106, Idaho Code, to the extent determined necessary by the district court to avoid the creation of a monopoly or any likely substantial lessening of competition resulting from such transaction found violative of section 48-106, Idaho Code; or
(ii) To restore competition in any line of Idaho commerce which has been eliminated by a violation of section 48-105, Idaho Code.
(2) The attorney general also may bring a civil action in the name of the state, as parens patriae on behalf of persons residing in this state, to secure monetary relief as provided under this chapter for injury directly or indirectly sustained by those persons because of any violation of section 48-104 or 48-105, Idaho Code, in accordance with the following provisions:
(a) The district court shall award the attorney general as monetary relief the total damages sustained for violations of section 48-104 or 48-105, Idaho Code, and the cost of suit, including a reasonable attorney’s fee. The court shall increase any damage recovery to an amount not in excess of three (3) times the damages sustained if the court finds that the violation at issue constituted a per se violation of section 48-104, Idaho Code, or an intentional violation of section 48-105, Idaho Code. The court shall exclude from the amount of monetary relief awarded in such action any amount which duplicates amounts which have been awarded for the same injury already or which are allocable to persons who have excluded their claims pursuant to subsection (2)(c) of this section.
(b) In any action brought under this section, the attorney general shall, at such times, in such manner, and with such content as the district court may direct, cause notice of the parens patriae action to be given by publication. If the court finds that notice given solely by publication would deny due process of law to any person, the court shall direct the attorney general to give such notice as may be required by due process of law.
(c) Any person on whose behalf an action is brought under this section may elect to exclude from such adjudication the portion of the attorney general’s claim for monetary relief attributable to him by filing notice of such election with the court within the time period specified in the notice of such action given to the persons to be benefited by the action. Any person failing to give such notice shall be barred during the pendency of such action from commencing an action in his or her own name for the injury alleged in such action and the final judgment in such action shall be res judicata as to any claim which could be brought by such person under this act based on the facts alleged or proven in such action.
(d) All damages shall be distributed in such a manner that will afford each person a reasonable opportunity to secure his appropriate portion of the net monetary relief.
(3) In lieu of instigating or continuing an action or proceeding, or to conclude an investigation commenced or contemplated under section 48-109, Idaho Code, the attorney general may accept a consent decree with respect to any act or practice alleged to be a violation of this chapter. The consent decree may include a stipulation for the payment of civil penalties, the attorney general’s reasonable expenses, investigative costs and attorney’s fees, an agreement to pay damages or to allow for restitution of money, property or other things received in connection with a violation of this chapter, and agreed to injunctive provisions. Before any consent decree entered into pursuant to this section is effective, it must be approved by the district court and an entry made in the district court in the manner required for making an entry of judgment. If the consent decree submitted to the court is to settle an action brought under subsection (2) of this section, notice of the proposed settlement shall be given in such manner as the court directs. Once court approval is received, any breach of the conditions of the consent decree shall be treated as a violation of a court order, and shall be subject to all penalties provided by law for violation of court orders, including the penalties set forth in section 48-111, Idaho Code.
(4) The attorney general may proceed under any antitrust laws in the federal courts on behalf of this state or any of its political subdivisions or agencies.
[48-108, added 2000, ch. 148, sec. 3, p. 379.]