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UNFAIR COMPETITION

Whether or not exclusive rights exist (patents, trade marks, copyrights, etc.) that restrict the free practice of certain activities, there are some business activities which are forbidden by virtue of the unfair competition law. Generally speaking, it can be deemed as falling within the scope of unfair competition any behaviour which is contrary to good faith.

Amongst others, the following practices can be considered unfair:

  • Acts of CONFUSION with activities, services, or establishments of third parties.

  • Acts of IMITATION of the activities of a third party which are protected by an exclusive right (patent, model, trade mark, copyright, etc.) or, when there is no such right, acts of imitation that are likely to provoke association with the activities rendered by that third party or purports an unfair profit from other's reputation or effort.
    It shall also be deemed as unfair, the systematic imitation of commercial services or initiatives of a third party, directly aimed at precluding or hindering its standing in the market and goes beyond what can be considered a natural market response.

  • Acts of DECEIT, such as the use or spreading of inaccurate or false information, the omission of true information and all information deemed to induce error about the nature, manufacturing or distribution, features, quality, quantity, and advantages offered concerning the products.

  • DENIGRATING acts concerning the activity, services or establishment of a third party capable of impairing its credit, or any such acts that are not accurate, true and relevant.

  • Acts of public COMPARISON of one’s own or other's activity, service or establishment with those of a third party when such a comparison does not refer to the same, relevant nor comparable facts.

  • The exploitation of the industrial, commercial or professional REPUTATION of others.

  • The infringement of INDUSTRIAL OR TRADE SECRETS, whether obtained legally (but under reservation) or illegally or by means of industrial espionage.

  • Inducing workers, suppliers and clients to BREACH CONTRACTUAL OBLIGATIONS undertaken with competitors.

  • INFRINGEMENT OF LAWS, in order to obtain an advantage in the market over competitors.

  • DISCRIMINATORY treatment of the consumer in respect of prices and other sales conditions, without justified reasons.

  • SELLING BELOW COST PRICE, when this could mislead the consumer over the level of prices of other products or services in the same commercial establishment, or when it may have the effect of impairing the image of other's product, or falls within a strategy to expel a competitor from the market.

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