Competition is key to American business. It is this competition that keeps prices low for consumers, helps the markets move efficiently, and is generally seen as a uniquely American trait. But one fundamental concept of that competition is fairness. If one company seeks to gain an advantage over another using unfair or unethical means, it can be a cause of action for South Florida unfair competition lawyers to litigate.
Unfair competition occurs when one business causes financial harm to another (likely a competitor) due to deceptive and wrongful behaviors and practices. Unfair competition is a broad area and includes various torts, but can usually be divided into two main categories, the first being unfair trade practices, and the second being civil actions arising from a competitor’s intent to confuse consumers about the source of services and/or products.
Unfair trade practices occur when someone interferes with a given business’s operation. For instance, let’s say Business A is a large electronics store competing with Business B, a small mom-and-pop electronic store. Business A sells many more goods due to the size of store and the number of its locations while Business B does more modest business because it is smaller and has only one location. It would be an unfair trade practice for Business A to tell it’s vendors not to sell any products to Business B or else it won’t carry that vendor’s products. The vendor would certainly acquiesce to Business A’s demands because it buys more electronics, so the law prohibits a company from strong-arming a vendor to choke out competition. This is just one such example of how that can occur.
An attempt to confuse the consumer is done by a business who wants to siphon off business from a particular brand by making an unrelated brand appear similar. For instance, Coca-Cola is an iconic brand with a particular can color, style of font, etc. Consumers who want Coca-Cola know exactly what they are looking for. If another soda company suddenly started marketing another soda using Coca-Cola’s colors, can styles, etc., consumers may assume that this was a new Coke product when in fact it is not. Because this would interfere with sales of Coca-Cola, this practice is prohibited.
If you believe your business has been damaged by unfair competition, the Fort Lauderdale unfair business competition attorneys at Schecter Law are well equipped to fully analyze the issues raised by your claim and to help you determine the proper course of action.
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We are committed to our clients as we are to their cases – Your phone calls are returned promptly; the lawyer assigned to your file is directly accountable to you; and, you will always be able to contact the partner in charge directly, without any buffers. If you are currently involved in a dispute involving your business or other commercial interests, contact the South Florida unfair business competition at Schecter Law. We strive to produce satisfied clients and we would be happy to assist in any actions you may have.