Competition and consumer protection
The Law Firm provides legal assistance in various aspects of competition and consumer protection law. Advisory services are tailored to individual needs of a given economic operator, with consideration given to the type and scale of business. It is our priority to enable the Client to achieve the desired economic goal while minimising any risks resulting from the infringement of competition and consumer protection law.
Areas of practice
We have experience with the analysis of agreements (including vertical and horizontal) between entrepreneurs or other market behaviour of economic operators as for the use of prohibited practices restricting competition.
Legal advice provided by the Law Firm within the aforementioned scope includes:
- reviewing agreements with regard to any provisions that may be considered competition restrictive practices,
- drafting agreements or individual contractual provisions in the wording that eliminates or minimises the risk of considering it a competition restrictive practice,
- analysing the behaviour of an entity holding a dominant position in the market as for the risk of considering a given behaviour of the economic operator an abuse of its dominant position,
- implementing any programs and solutions at entrepreneurs, aiming to prevent the infringement of competition protection regulations by employees and collaborators of such entrepreneur (Compliance policy).
The currently valid law protects consumers specifically against the use by entrepreneurs of so‑called abusive clauses in contracts (including general contract terms and conditions, rules and regulations). Due to the possible imposition of fines on entrepreneurs by the President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection /UOKiK/ for the application of such provisions in contracts with consumers, it is essential to carefully draft contract templates.
Within the legal advisory services provided in this scope, we review the templates of contracts used by the Client in contacts with consumers as for the occurrence of abusive clauses, and we draft contract templates, taking the previous decisions issued by courts and the President of UOKiK into account.
We represent entrepreneurs in proceedings before the President of UOKiK and before the Competition and Consumer Protection Court in appeals against any decision of the President of UOKiK, as well as before the Court of Appeal in Warsaw and the Supreme Court (e.g. in matters related to antitrust issues, in cases regarding the recognition of contract templates illegal).
We draft applications under a leniency programme if any economic operator is found to participate in an agreement restricting competition. We participate in inspections and searches made at entrepreneurs by the President of UOKiK.
The control of concentrations is an essential element of any merger, acquisition, creation of a joint venture or even acquisition of controlling shares (interest) by a natural person. Due to a relatively low legally binding threshold for a notification of a proposed concentration, the verification of the obligation to notify such proposed concentration to the President of UOKiK in principle should be made in every case.
Our legal advisory services within that scope include the verification of the obligation to notify a proposed concentration to the President of UOKiK and the assistance in drafting the notification of a proposed concentration.
In the case of concentration of undertakings operating on a European scale it may be necessary to notify a proposed concentration to the European Commission, in line with the applicable EU provisions. The Law Firm advises its Clients on the analysis of the authority competent to receive a notification of a proposed concentration and assist in drafting the relevant notification to the European Commission.