Let’s face it. When it comes to sales rep-principal relationships, sustainability often boils down to “What have you done for me lately?”
That answer, unfortunately, is oftentimes “Not enough.” Or, we sometimes hear the term that principals want “added value” from their sales reps, which usually comes up when an agent is earning their hard-earned commissions on a longer-term basis. Having previously written about expedited terminations of sales reps, and having recently litigated some of these issues, in various jurisdictions throughout the United States, there are two different possible means to protect sales reps who must sign representation agreements with … Read the rest
Does 30 Days Really Mean 30 Days?
The poison pill for any independent sales agent that relies on building up and establishing a territory, or booking business, is the dreaded 30-day at will termination provision. Unfortunately, such provisions are found in the great majority of sales agent contracts I see. Is the agent left with any leverage, legally speaking, when the principal complies with such a short termination notice provision? The answer, surprisingly, may be yes!
One doctrine that may override a poison pill provision in an agent’s contract is the Covenant of Good Faith and Fair Dealing. In … Read the rest
Many agents come to my firm with great confusion about the more “boilerplate” terms in their written contracts. There seem to be several universally misunderstood terms that just keep getting bandied about erroneously:
- Choice of Law
Each of these terms, often referred to as boilerplate, should be included in your contract, especially when considering that your principals are often headquartered and operate in different states than you.
Venue is the place where a lawsuit or other form of dispute resolution will take place.
Jurisdiction means that a particular court has authority to hear a particular dispute.
Choice … Read the rest
Although most manufacturers abide by the MANA code of ethics and pay their agents in a timely manner all commissions owed, sometimes unfortunate circumstances arise causing an agent not to be paid. In the case where litigation thus arises, it is critical to have certain key contract terms to protect your rights.
Having seen many different representation agreements (contracts between sales agents and their principals) presented by sales agents in a wide variety of industries, there seem to be several universally misunderstood, absent or poorly written terms:
- “Choice of Law”
- “ADR” (Alternative Dispute Resolution)
Each of these terms really … Read the rest