Unfair competition laws are on the books in every state, as well as at the federal level. These rules are in place to ensure companies that they are not being undercut or unfairly treated in the marketplace by their competitors. In addition to that, the law helps to protect the intellectual property that companies have.
In California, the unfair competition law is called Section 17200, and it reads, in part, that "any unlawful, unfair, or fraudulent business act or practice and unfair, deceptive, untrue, or misleading advertising" means that a company has run afoul of the unfair competition law.
If the company has run afoul of the law, then there are two remedies. The first is an injunction that would order the offending company to cease their actions. The second is restitution, which could be the return of something that the offending company is not supposed to have, or financial compensation to remedy the situation.
Unfair competition may seem simple given the last two paragraph, but being able to identify unfair competition and then prove unfair competition is an entirely different matter. This is a simultaneously complex and vague idea, and it is important for any business that feels they have been taken advantage of under the unfair competition law to consult with an experienced attorney to discuss matters of unfair competition.
At Klein & Wilson, we can help companies by addressing their questions about fair and unfair competition, counseling them on their legal situation and then representing them in case of unfair competition.