Business transactions and operations are subject to specific practices and regulations, in regard to management and operational matters as well as in regard to legal matters. Commercial law - i.e. the sum total of all legal norms applicable to merchants in the legal relationships with their business partners - is based on the fundamental principle of legal certainty and confidence in commercial activities. This is reflected, e.g. in the establishment of commercial registers, the existence of special commercial powers such as the commercial power of attorney (Prokura) or the principles of promissory estoppel (Rechtsscheinhaftung).
Merchants are subject to stricter duties of care, notification and documentation when conducting commercial transactions. On the other hand, they also enjoy greater freedoms to facilitate commerce, for example, with regard to form requirements or agreements on jurisdiction. In the framework of General Terms and Conditions, merchants may agree on deviations from statutory provisions, which would not be permitted in contracts between or with consumers. In addition, the INCOTERMS or the UN Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (CISG) were specifically developed for commercial transactions.
An important part of commercial law is agency law, which is becoming more and more important as product sales also across national borders increases. For many companies, the definition and design of suitable distribution channels, for example, by employing sales representatives, distributors or franchisees, is for many companies an important issue. A thorough understanding the laws and regulations applicable to the relationships between business owners and marketing agents, which are frequently governed not only by national law but also by European law, is indispensable and often requires the advice of a qualified lawyer.
It is part of the daily experience at Derra, Meyer & Partner to assist and advise business owners in the development and review of their contracts and general terms and conditions used in the course of their business relations. Our experienced lawyers provide counsel in the selection and design of distribution systems tailored to the needs of the business concerned, also including consideration of antitrust issues, which often play a role in selective distribution systems. In the design of distribution agreements for business owners and/or sales representatives, distributors or franchisees, our special focus is on sensitive contractual issues, such as commission and compensation claims, grounds for termination, non-compete clauses, etc. If a matter escalates to the level of a dispute in regard to termination, commission entitlements and commission statements, claims to produce documentation, severance and compensation payments, our lawyers will gladly assist you in the identification, calculation and assertion of your claims against the other contracting party. If an amicable settlement is not possible, we are ready to represent your case in court or arbitration.
Serving, among others, as outside counsel for the leading national federation representing the interests of German commercial agents and distributors (Centralvereinigung Deutscher Wirtschaftsverbände für Handelsvermittlung und Vertrieb (CDH) e.V.) in Berlin, and due to the membership of our lawyers in the German society for distribution rights (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Vertriebsrecht), the lawyers of Derra Meyer & Partners are directly concerned and always well informed about current developments and topical issues in the field of distribution law. Moreover, our lawyers specialised in distribution law are regularly invited to speak on legal issues, take part in advanced training courses and publish contributions on issues relating to their practice.
Due to the international orientation of Derra, Meyer & Partners, our lawyers are also well positioned and able to provide qualified and professional counsel in cross-border matters with due consideration of the legal peculiarities of such cases. The professional of our lawyers is based on long-standing experience and professional work often acquired and intensified abroad. Consulting services can be provided in German, English, Italian, Polish and Russian.
Through our membership in the DIRO AG, one of Europe's largest networks of lawyers, we can also rely on cooperation partners throughout Europe.