A PYMNTS Company

38 States Hit Google With Third Antitrust Suit Since October

 |  December 17, 2020

A bipartisan group of 38 states sued Google Thursday, December 17, alleging broad antitrust violations in the online search market, reported CNBC. This is the third US case against the search giant in two months.

Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser led the group of 38 states and territories in the lawsuit, which claims Google illegally maintained a monopoly in general search and search advertising through anticompetitive conduct and contracts. Members of the executive committee leading the states also included Arizona, Iowa, Nebraska, New York, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Utah. 

Weiser said at a press conference Thursday that the group would file a motion to consolidate the case with the Justice Department’s recent lawsuit against Google.

Thursday’s suit followed a months-long investigation by attorneys general in Colorado, Nebraska, New York, and other states into whether Google abuses the market power of its dominant search business.

A press release announcing the new states lawsuit describes Google’s actions as a “multi-pronged effort to maintain its monopolies.”

Weiser said at the press conference the new suit goes beyond the DOJ’s by looking at how Google allegedly used exclusionary contracts to tie up emerging distribution channels that consumers use to access search engines, like smart speakers.

A group of ten Republican AGs sued Google on Wednesday, targeting its advertising technology business and an allegedly illegal deal with Facebook.