Areas of Practice

Competition Law

Public Enforcement

Compliance with competition rules is firstly ensured by the European Commission and, in Portugal, by the Portuguese Competition Authority (AdC).

The decisions of the European Commission are subject to appeal to the General Court, whose decisions may be appealed to the Court of Justice. Admissibility of an appeal against decisions of the General Court requires a sound knowledge of the applicable requirements and of the practice of the Court of Justice. The decisions of the Portuguese Competition Authority are subject to appeal at first instance to the Portuguese Court of Competition, Regulation and Supervision (TCRS).

Fines for infringements of competition law have increased significantly in recent years, bringing them closer to criminal sanctions, as the European Court of Human Rights has acknowledged. This calls for greater awareness on the part of companies and their managers, not only of the standards to be met and on the importance of setting up compliance programs, but also of their rights of defence, as enshrined in the Treaties, in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, and in national and European legislation.

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