The Yates Memorandum’s Impact of U.S. Cartel Enforcement: Evolution or Revolution?

By Robert E. Bloch, Kelly B. Kramer & Stephen M. Medlock –

This paper suggests that the Yates Memorandum marks a significant change in the DOJ’s approach to investigating and prosecuting individuals. More than a decade ago, DOJ’s Antitrust Division instituted a policy of seeking to prosecute the highestranking responsible executives for cartel behavior. Many of the changes that the Yates Memorandum requires were already anticipated by the Division’s policies. While the Yates Memorandum may have profound effects in many areas of law, for the criminal cartel bar, the changes it introduces appear to be more evolutionary than revolutionary.