Distribution, Competition and Intellectual Property in France

We provide consulting services on all issues of French distribution law as well as on competition law and intellectual property in France. We can provide consulting services in French, German and English.

France has different legal bases for the distribution of goods and services. Options for drafting the relevant contracts with distributors and customers in France will vary in accordance with the applicable law. Regulations under European and national competition law must be observed, and your intellectual property rights must be protected.

Legal Services concerning Distribution, Competition and Intellectual Property in France

In addition to legal consulting, our team of attorneys with intercultural experience will also help you with the practical implementation in France in the following areas:

  • General Terms and Conditions for Business in France (review and drafting in accordance with international and French law as well as bilingual German-French version)
  • French commercial law, merchant law, commercial agency law and UN sales law
  • Review and adaptation of sensitive contractual clauses to French law (in particular liability, warranty and retention of title under French law)
  • Contracts for cooperation with commercial agents, dealers or franchise partners in France
  • Termination of distribution contracts with distribution partners in France, calculation of possible compensation payments under French law
  • Consulting and legal representation at the French courts in case of abrupt termination of a business relationship in France (so-called “rupture brutale”)
  • Defence of claims by the distributor in France
  • Cross-border supply contracts and framework contracts in compliance with French law
  • Amicable resolution of disputes with opposing parties in France
  • Protection of intellectual property under French law: Registration of trademarks, images and designs in France and review of their eligibility for registration; protection of know-how, reminders and litigation in case of infringement in France; licence agreements under French law
  • European and French competition law; advice and risk analysis for the French market (in particular with regard to selective or exclusive distribution channels) and review of sensitive contractual clauses (exclusive distribution, supply protection, territorial protection, customer protection)
  • Sworn and unsworn translations of German and French documents

We train your sales team on topics such as “Legal aspects of distribution in France” and “Structure and use of distribution documents for business in France”. We would be happy to send you a training offer if you are interested.

Did you know that in France…

  • when terminating a permanent business relationship with a distributor in France, that French law provides for a required notice period of up to 18 months?
  • a commercial agent in France who has been terminated is entitled to payment of compensation which under French law is normally equivalent to two full annual commissions?
  • there is no French law on general terms and conditions, but in France an Unfair Terms Law Commission (“Commission des clauses abusives”) has been set up to sanction certain unfair contractual terms?
  • warranty claims in France can be limited under French law only if the seller and the purchaser are from the same profession?
  • the beneficiary of a post-contractual non-compete obligation in France may, on termination of a contract, for example a French agency contract, unilaterally waive the post-contractual non-compete obligation under French law?

Our German-French Team for Distribution, Competition and Intellectual Property in France