The Court of Appeals of Milan clarified again the importance of distinguishing indirect from direct commissions due to an agent from a principal

Case reviewed by Stefano Trifirò and Mariapaola Rovetta

The Court of Appeals of Milan clarified again the importance of distinguishing indirect from direct commissions due to an agent from a principal. The former, as is well known, are due to an agent only in the eventuality that the principal operates directly in the area of competence of the agent, finalising business directly with clients within the agent’s mandate. Practically speaking, this situation can often be confusing. Specifically, the problem arose due to the presence of clients managed directly by the principal without taking into consideration the area of competence of the individual agents. The Court found in the principal’ s favour because the clients were determined to have a direct relationship with the principal, and consequently the indirect commissions were not owed.Moreover, the agent’s defence didn’t give appropriate evidence as regards the specific type of clientele, and also from analysis of the depositions it was clear that the agent could only operate in a promotional manner, whereas the principal had the responsibility to decide whether to accept or not the business brought by the agent.

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