There are many reasons why businesses choose to use an agent or a distributor, perhaps to take advantage of an agent’s or distributor’s local knowledge and established trade connections, or to avoid the costs of setting up a selling operation and salesforce or to limit the cost exposure of trialling a new market or new product. Another reason may be that in some jurisdictions, a foreign principal can only do business through a local resident agent or distributor.
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The terms “agent” and “distributor” are often used interchangeably, but there is an important distinction at law and the drafting of the agreements used to appoint the agent or a distributor will usually determine whether the Commercial Agents Regulations 1993 will apply or not.
Whether you are a manufacturer, supplier, distributor or agent, our solicitors will work with you from the outset to ensure that the structure of your agreement takes into account the Regulations (if applicable) and reflects the commercial aims of the parties.
The impact of the Commercial Agents Regulations 1993 is such that manufacturers can experience difficulties or incur unexpected costs when appointing or terminating the engagement of an agent, or even when varying the terms of their appointment. The statutory liability can be significant and getting the position right at the outset and walking into any future relationship with your eyes open as to the pros and cons of each structure, and the associated risk and liabilities is vital.
Similarly, our Commercial team can advise agents on the full extent of their rights under the Regulations. We have extensive experience advising on the terms of agency and distribution agreements both nationally and internationally.
For more information or to discuss your commercial enquiry, contact us on 0343 507 5151, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or complete the online form on the right and we will call you back at a time convenient for you.
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