Return of the Regulatory Compliance Defense
12 PM EDT
In 2017, the FTC filed a complaint against the Louisiana Real Estate Appraisers Board ("LREAB"), alleging that its rules and enforcement efforts effectively fixed minimum prices paid to residential real estate appraisers. LREAB asserted numerous affirmative defenses, including its good faith compliance with federal and state regulatory obligations - a defense rarely invoked outside of decades-old telecom cases. In May 2019, the Commission denied Complaint Counsel's Motion for Partial Summary Decision, reaffirming the vitality of the defense. The defense's contours remain unclear, but state boards must understand any potential tension between antitrust law and other laws and regulations.