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EU Court of Justice broadens the scope of follow-on damage claims by permitting actions against the subsidiaries’ of companies which have been found to have infringed competition law (Sumal / Mercedes Benz Trucks España)

On 6 October 2021, the CJEU issued its judgment in Case C-882/19, Sumal, S.L. v Mercedes Benz Trucks España, S.L. (EU:C:1987:418), and confirmed that follow-on damages actions can be brought against subsidiaries of companies found to have infringed EU competition law. The victim of an infringement of EU competition law that was committed by a parent company and sanctioned by the EC may seek compensation from a subsidiary of the parent, even if the subsidiary was not referred to in the EC decision. To that end, the victim must prove that the parent and subsidiary companies constituted a single economic unit at the time of the infringement. The single economic unit principle has been long established by the case law and is applied regularly in the context of private damages actions for

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Hendrik Viaene, Karolien Van der Putten, EU Court of Justice broadens the scope of follow-on damage claims by permitting actions against the subsidiaries’ of companies which have been found to have infringed competition law (Sumal / Mercedes Benz Trucks España), 6 October 2021, e-Competitions Preview, Art. N° 106589

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