Myerson Solicitors is a prominent UK law firm that specializes in Commercial Agency law. The team of skilled experts provides comprehensive advice to both agents and principals, covering all aspects of commercial agency law.
At Salesagents.uk, we are pleased to partner with Myerson Solicitors to address the legal queries of our members and clients.
Myerson Solicitors has conducted two informative webinars that are essential for companies working with agents, as well as agents themselves. Both webinars are available for viewing below and are highly recommended.
Commercial sales agency: A webinar for principals (Part 1)
In this webinar, Suzanne Carr and Robert Brothers, experts in commercial agency law from Myerson, provide a detailed overview of the commercial agent regulations. The aim is to help businesses understand the legal rights and obligations of both parties under the regulations.
Introduction to the Regulations
The Commercial Agents Regulations were enacted in 1993 in England to harmonize legislation in EU member states in relation to the treatment of independent commercial agents. These regulations offer mandatory rights to agents and provide them with various protections, including minimum notice periods, compensation, and indemnity upon termination of the agency.
Determining if a Business Employs a Commercial Agent
The speakers highlight that many businesses may not be aware of the existence and effects of the regulations or may not appreciate that someone selling goods on their behalf is classified as a commercial agent. A commercial agent is defined as a self-employed intermediary who has continuing authority to negotiate the sale or purchase of goods on behalf of the principal and must be independent of the principal. The agent must be authorized to approach customers and market the principal’s goods and be paid by commission, a fixed retainer, or a mixture of both.
Rights of Agents and Principals
The webinar discusses the rights of agents and principals under the UK Commercial Agents Regulations. Agents have the right to commission on sales during the agency, pipeline commissions after termination, compensation or indemnity payments on termination, and statutory notice. The principal is obligated to act dutifully and in good faith towards the agent.
Contracting Out of the Regulations
Principals can agree on additional obligations with agents and may include provisions to contract out of the regulations. However, some regulations, such as post-termination compensation or indemnity payments, are mandatory and cannot be contracted out. There is some uncertainty regarding the right to pipeline commissions after termination.
Top Tips for Principals
Myerson provide some top tips for principals, including seeking legal advice before terminating an agency contract, considering the contract’s terms and obligations, and recording any variations to the agency contract in writing. Finally, if there are serious concerns, it is recommended that principals seek advice on the options available.
The Commercial Agents Regulations offer important protections to commercial agents, and it is vital for businesses to understand the legal rights and obligations of both parties under the regulations. Seeking legal advice before terminating an agency contract and keeping a good record of any concerns are crucial steps for principals to protect themselves and their business.
Part 2: Commercial sales agents
Protecting Agents and Principals
In the first part of the series, Myerson specialists explained the regulations under commercial agency law that provide protection for agents and principals. An agent’s entitlements upon termination of an agency were covered in detail.
Contracting Out of Regulations
While the regulations are mandatory and cannot be excluded entirely by agreement between the parties, it is possible to contract out of certain parts of the regulations. In such cases, the agreement should be recorded in writing, and the agent should give their consent to the variation. A lack of clarity and evidence regarding what the parties have agreed often leads to disputes.
Understanding Agents’ Entitlements
In the second part of the series, Myerson discussed the entitlement of an agent to be paid commission, the right to receive a termination payment which can either be compensation or indemnity, and the right to a minimum statutory Notice Period of 1-3 months. The right to indemnity or compensation will be lost if the agent fails to notify the principal of its intention to pursue this right within one year of the termination of the agency. The discussion also touched on the practical aspects of valuing an agency, which involves various issues for a principal to consider.
Exploring Agency Law
The webinar is about agency law and its application to commercial agents. Myerson discussed various topics such as the definition of a commercial agent, the rights and obligations of agents, the types of agency agreements, termination of agency agreements, and sub-agency relationships. Myerson also answered questions from attendees about the implications of the pending repeal of the Commercial Agents Regulations and an agent’s entitlement to compensation upon retirement.
Overall, the webinar provides valuable information for both agents and principals. It is important to understand the rights and obligations of each party, as well as the regulations under commercial agency law. Agents and principals should also be aware of their entitlements and the circumstances under which they may apply. Properly documenting agreements and seeking legal advice can help prevent disputes and ensure a smooth termination of the agency agreement.
About Myerson Solicitors
Founded in 1982, Myerson Solicitors is an award-winning, ‘Top Tier’ Legal 500-rated law firm. Myerson has also been recognised as a Top 200 UK Law Firm due to its expert commercial and private services. As part of our dispute resolution department, we have a team of specialist commercial agency lawyers, including associate Robert Brothers and partner Suzanne Carr. Robert and Suzanne have both been individually recognised by the Legal 500, with Suzanne being accredited as a ‘Rising Star’. Robert and Suzanne both possess a wealth of knowledge and experience handling complex dispute resolution matters.
You can contact Robert and Suzanne via the following methods: