Developing the Antitrust Bar


By:


Bruce Hoffman, Bureau of Competition

For the good of the antitrust bar and our entire profession, the BC Front Office encourages parties to give associates, counsel, and newer partners more opportunities to present to the Bureau and the Commission in party meetings. In return, we promise reasonable expectations based on attorneys’ level of experience.

Junior attorneys need “on your feet” opportunities to build their legal skills—not only to ensure that future clients will be well-represented, but also so the profession can continue to develop and retain talented individuals. This can be a challenge, especially given the nature of legal practice today. Judges in courts around the country (including in California, Delaware, Massachusetts, and Texas) have recognized that recent law graduates have fewer opportunities to take leading roles in court. To address this problem, these courts have implemented rules that encourage case managers to give less experienced attorneys more stand-up time.

Junior lawyers hoping to specialize in antitrust—especially those practicing before the federal antitrust agencies—do not find themselves in court often. In meetings with the Bureau and Commissioners, however, less experienced antitrust attorneys can be given a chance to make presentations and argue the merits on behalf of their clients. We encourage counsel and their clients to take advantage of these opportunities. Such experiences will encourage these attorneys to stay engaged in our profession and, hopefully, develop into antitrust bar leaders.

Please be assured that the Bureau will take experience level into account when we interact with your junior professionals during meetings and, importantly, when we evaluate their presentations. As always, our goal is to reach the right outcome for competition and consumers, and we will work with you to ensure we get the information we need.