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What constitutes unfair competition?

On Behalf of | Jan 25, 2021 | Firm News

One of the virtues of capitalism is competition, and healthy competition may help keep the economy balanced and the consumer happy. Unfair competition, though, seeks to gain an advantage by employing unlawful means.

New Jersey statutes are in place to protect you and your profits, and detail several methods of unfair competition that they protect against.

Tactics to promote their own businesses

Rival businesses may engage in false advertising to increase attention for a product or service that does not match what they advertise. This includes fabricating evidence and information that may back up their claims but have no valid sources.

Another method involves unauthorized substitution. Like false advertising, it attracts customers — but to a product that does not exist. This leads an interested customer into their place of business so they can then encourage the sale of a different item.

Tactics to attack your business

Any business infringing on your trademarks without your authorization may make an illegal profit off of what you own. Even if you stop them, it might confuse the customers enough that it hurts your business in the aftermath. This also includes the misappropriation of trade secrets if a competitor somehow gains access to your confidential trade information without your consent.

If competitors team up to divide your market and fix prices too low for you to work with, your business may suffer. But this may be a violation of antitrust law.

The invisible hand of the market is not so benevolent that it precludes companies dealing in underhanded strategies, and these cases may get complex fast. Keeping an eye out for these strategies and relying on market protections that New Jersey provides may help your business entity from suffering unnecessarily.