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Taking Stock of the Collective Proceedings Regime in the Competition Appeal Tribunal – A Successful Compromise?

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This article examines whether the competition collective actions regime amended in 2015 can be considered to be a successful compromise between facilitating redress for competition law infringements and minimising the risk of vexatious or otherwise unmeritorious class claims being brought. It focusses in particular on the two cases in which certification hearings have taken place and judgments have been given - Gibson v. Pride and Merricks v. Mastercard - and the question of the intensity of the control that the Competition Appeal Tribunal should have over collective actions through the certification process. It also considers the potential implications of the recent Court of Appeal judgment in Lloyd v Google, which some commentators have suggested may encourage claimants to re-consider using the representative action route offered by rule 19.6 of the Civil Procedure Rules, as an alternative to the competition collective actions regime.