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The German Unfair Competition Act (UWG) used to prevent almost all creative advertising measures: everything that could possibly mislead even the most casual consumer in any way was forbidden. Today, competition law is much more liberal, not least because of European harmonisation. It is meant to help ensure fair and free competition and to guarantee that the consumer can make an informed decision. In general, issues under competition law often concern misleading advertisement, but also product counterfeits.
Competition law has been a priority for our legal advisory team for decades. We prosecute your competitors’ anti-competitive behaviour and assume defense against unlawful attacks by competitors or so-called Abmahnvereine or “warning letter specialists”. Before you begin planning advertising measures, we give you advice regarding possible legal risks and develop strategies on how these risks can be avoided. The same goes for product development or changes that will be newly brought to the market or are inspired by or imitate an original product from our client’s portfolio.
Competition disputes can usually be avoided in advance. Of course, we also assist our clients when a dispute does arise, whether it be in the form of a warning, a preliminary injunction, or main court proceedings.