Unfair competition, case II CKN 578/99

January 10th, 2005, Tomasz Rychlicki

The Supreme Court in its judgment of 11 October 2001 case file II CKN 578/99 interpreted the provisions of Article 10(1) of the Polish Act of 16 April 1993 on Combating Unfair Competition – CUC – (in Polish: ustawa o zwalczaniu nieuczciwej konkurencji), published in Journal of Laws (Dziennik Ustaw) No. 47, item 211, with subsequent amendments.

Article 10
(1) Such indication of products or services or its lack, which may mislead customers in relation to the origin, quantity, quality, components, manufacturing process, usefulness, possible application, repair, maintenance and another significant features of products or services as well as concealing the risks connected with their use, shall be the act of unfair competition.

The court ruled that the act of unfair competition in the form of unauthorized imitation of packaging that belongs to another company, and the act of selling products in such packagings, may justify the tortious (delict) liability for damage in the form of lucrum cessans (profits given up), if between the unauthorized imitation and the damage exists a normal causal link/nexus.