United States v. Grinnell Corporation
United States Supreme Court
384 U.S. 563 (1966)
Grinnell Corporation (defendant) was a plumbing and fire-sprinkler manufacturer. Grinnell owned controlling stock in three companies that provided fire and burglary alarm services (defendants). The three companies offered accredited central-station services, which used nearby stations staffed by guards 24 hours a day. The three companies Grinnell controlled had over 87 percent of the market for accredited central-station services. Homeowners with accredited central-station services were charged lower insurance premiums than homeowners using other forms of home protection. Alternative forms included watchmen, watchdogs, audible alarms, automatic proprietary systems, unaccredited central-station services, and services connected to local governments. The United States (plaintiff) sued Grinnell and the three fire and burglary alarm companies, alleging violations of § 1 and § 2 of the Sherman Act. Grinnell disputed the definition of the relevant market. Grinnell said that accredited central-service stations compete with other forms of home protection, and these alternative services should have been included as part of a wider market definition. Grinnell also argued the geographic market should have been defined locally rather than nationally. Because the services protected property at a fixed location, Grinnell argued competition occurred only between companies in the property’s area. However, prices and policies were set nationally. The district court found the defendants had committed per se violations of § 1 and § 2 of the Sherman Act. The defendants appealed to the United States Supreme Court.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Douglas, J.)
Dissent (Fortas, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 175,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,000 briefs, keyed to 188 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.