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Commercial agency disputes

The Commercial Agents (Council Directive) Regulations 1993 ("Regulations") regulate the relationship between principals and self-employed commercial agents.  Both principals and commercial agents often fail to appreciate their special status under the Regulations and as a consequence they do not always understand either the rights that they enjoy or the obligations that they must fulfil towards one another. This can lead to fundamental misunderstandings where one or other of the parties inadvertently acts to its detriment in genuine ignorance of the true legal position.

Our team has experience of advising clients in this complex and specialist area and can assist both principals and commercial agents by advising on the issues that commonly arise in relation to such relationships, including:

  • Whether someone is or is not a commercial agent within the meaning of the Regulations;
  • Whether there has been a termination of the commercial agency by the principal giving rise to an entitlement to compensation or an indemnity under the Regulations;
  • The likely value of any claim for compensation and/or an indemnity following termination;
  • The settlement and compromise of claims by commercial agents;
  • The 'migration' of a sales/purchasing operation based on the use of self-employed commercial agents to a model based on poeple directly employed by the business;
  • Issues relating to the resignation of commercial agents;
  • Conducting or defending litigation brought by commercial agents seeking compensation and/or post-termination commission under the Regulations.

We are happy to provide you with an initial assessment and recommend preliminary action on a fixed fee basis in order to provide you with certainty of cost.

Key contacts


Mark Surguy
T: +44 (0)121 616 6587
Email Mark


Ben Mackenzie
T: +44 (0)113 213 4133
Email Ben
Nick Collins
T: +44 (0)113 213 4062
Email Nick
Peter McWilliams
T: +44 (0)113 213 4085
Email Peter


Andrew Roberts
T: +44 (0)151 243 9840
Email Andrew


Michael Green
T: +44 (0)20 7822 1982
Email Michael
Robert Jones
Robert Jones

Direct dial: +44 (0)161 233 7358
Email me
Meet the team