On 20 June 2023, the Court of Turin issued its judgment No. 2598/2023 (the "Decision") on unfair competition by disparagement under Articles 2598(2) and (3) of the Italian Civil Code (the "ICC"). The Court noted that commercial practices as well the ethical principles that govern the activity of the economic operators in a given category should be considered in order to assess the disparagement of a competitor. Moreover, the Court recalled that the criterion of professional fairness as per Article 2598(3) of the ICC shall be construed by also taking as a reference the effects of given conduct on the market and competition. On the basis of these principles, the Decision ruled that sending an unfounded warning letter to a competitor without communicating it to the public does not represent an act of unfair competition by disparagement under Article 2598(2) ICC. Nonetheless, this conduct may amount to unfair competition as per Article 2598(3) ICC, as it is inconsistent with the principles of professional correctness.

Originally published by July, 2023

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