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Texas Industries, Inc. v. Radcliff Materials, Inc.

United States Supreme Court
451 U.S. 630 (1981)


Facts

Wilson P. Abraham Construction Corp. (Abraham) (plaintiff) sued Texas Industries, Inc. (TI) (defendant) in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, asserting that TI and other concrete manufacturers had colluded to raise prices in violation of federal antitrust laws, specifically the Sherman Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1. During the discovery phase, it became clear that Abraham believed Radcliff Materials, Inc. and two other firms (third-party defendants) had conspired with TI. TI filed a third-party complaint against the third-party defendants for contribution in the event TI was found liable to Abraham. However, the district court concluded that there was no right of contribution between co-conspirators who violated federal antitrust laws and dismissed the third-party complaint for failure to state a claim. The United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed on the grounds that (1) neither the Sherman Act nor the Clayton Act create a right to contribution and (2) federal courts should not create a common law right of contribution for antitrust violations. TI petitioned the United States Supreme Court for certiorari, which was granted.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Burger, C.J.)

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