Termination of distribution agreements in Portuguese law (in special notice periods and compensation of good-will)
No direito contratual português, os acordos de distribuição constituem uma categoria genérica e heterogénea que integra a agência, a concessão comercial e a franquia. A agência está legalmente prevista e regulada como tipo contratual autónomo, com noção e elementos essenciais, ao passo que a concessão comercial e a franquia são objeto de elaboração doutrinária e jurisprudencial. É opinião comum que a agência está vocacionada para servir de ‘regime-modelo’ dos contratos de distribuição. Este trabalho trata, em particular, de alguns problemas de cessação dos contratos, tais como a denúncia e a indemnização de clientela, indagando se e em que termos as regras da agência se adequam à concessão comercial e à franquia, tendo em conta a jurisprudência recente dos tribunais portugueses.
Abstract - In Portuguese contract law, distribution agreements are a generic and heterogeneous category which includes agency, commercial concession and franchising contracts. The agency is regulated by special legislation as a separate type of contract with its notion and essential elements, while the commercial concession and franchise are object of doctrinal and jurisprudential construction. It is common understanding that the agency serves as the model regulation for distribution contracts. This paper focuses, in particular, some problems of termination of contracts, such as notice terms and compensation for goodwill, asking whether (and on what terms) the rules of the agency contract are suited to commercial concession and to franchise agreements, taking into account recent jurisprudence of the Portuguese courts.
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