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I think it's a terrible idea to allow our industry trade group, the AIA, to define our fee structure. We're not a cartel, we're independent businesses serving our communities.
Price-fixing is anti-competitive, distorts market-choice and ultimately drives down the quality and selection of services offered to the customer.
Robert Krieger, AIA, NCARB
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This thread was flagged by our Knowledge Community team due to potential antitrust implications. I have reviewed the thread, and I understand the desire to discuss these issues at a high level – the fact that discussion regarding actual fee amounts was avoided is appreciated; however, antitrust laws cover much more than that.
Three things to keep in mind:
The question, then, is how do we have these kinds of good faith discussions without running afoul of the antitrust laws? Because of the complexities, these kinds of discussion should take place as part of a planned and curated session which can be reviewed beforehand and monitored during. This is less organic, of course, but it is the best way to go about it.
If you have any questions or wish to speak to me directly, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would be happy to talk with you.
Terrence "Terry" OnaSr. Vice President & General CounselOffice of General Counsel
It is the practice of The American Institute of Architects ("the Institute" or "the AIA") and its members to comply strictly with all laws, including federal and state antitrust laws, that apply to AIA operations and activities. Compliance with the letter and spirit of the antitrust laws is an important goal of the AIA, and is essential to maintaining the Institute's reputation for the highest standards of ethical conduct.
When the professional organization (a trade group) assembles and distributes this information it is regarded as collusion & price fixing and is enjoined by the anti-trust laws. Think of it as sharing price information among all the brick suppliers through the Masonry Institute.
If a private publisher accumulates and sells this information, it is free speech.
Jim Copeland is correct (see his chat entry). This is what Means does when they publish the cost of material and labor for different parts of the country.