Collective proceedings in the Competition Appeal Tribunal
Produced in partnership with Constantine Cannon LLP
Collective proceedings in the Competition Appeal Tribunal

The following Competition guidance note Produced in partnership with Constantine Cannon LLP provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Collective proceedings in the Competition Appeal Tribunal
  • Overview of the process
  • Availability of collective proceedings
  • Who can act as a class representative?
  • The certification regime
  • Calculation and award of damages
  • Collective settlements
  • CMA involvement
  • Relationship to voluntary redress schemes
  • Funding
  • more

Legislative reforms, which took effect on 1 October 2015, established the right to collective redress for victims of anti-competitive behaviour, including the option to bring an opt-out action allowing an appointed class representative to recover damages on behalf of all persons similarly situated who have not positively decided to withdraw from the action.

For an overview of the UK private actions regime in general, see further UK damages actions.

Overview of the process

The below provides introduces the collective procedure at the Competition Appeal Tribunal (CAT) and some of the important differences between it and litigation in the High Court. Points covered include the following:

  1. sources of authority

  2. how claims are commenced

  3. issue of the collective proceedings order

  4. rights of class members, and

  5. distribution of awards.

Sources of authority

The CAT does not directly apply the Civil Procedure Rules (CPR) that govern proceedings in the High Court and County Court. It has its own set of procedural rules, the CAT Rules (the Rules).

The rules are supplemented by the CAT’s Guide to Proceedings, reissued on 1 October 2015 (the Guide). The Guide has the status of a Practice Direction under the Rules.

Although the CPR are not directly applicable in the CAT, the Rules 'pursue the same philosophy' and 'many of the rules are modelled on the CPR'. Where a rule mirrors the CPR,