The Commercial Code establishes the principle of free competition.
Freedom of competition must be exercised while respecting the fairness of competition
The freedom of competition may be subject to limitations which in principle may be legitimate when they constitute the protection inherent in the cessation of activity.
These are implicit or express non-compete commitments on the occasion of a sale of activities provided for in a commercial contract. This can take the form of a sale of business assets or a transfer of social rights or a business transfer. The foreclosure guarantee implies a non-competition obligation which may be the subject of a non-competition clause.
It also concerns implicit or express commitments on the occasion of the end of an activity of a natural person. It can be either the end of an employment contract or a corporate office. The non-competition commitment results from an obligation of loyalty and may be subject, within the limits set by case law, to a non-competition clause.
Implicit or express commitments may arise on the occasion of the end of an activity rendered in the form of a contract in particular for services in order for example to avoid the illegitimate appropriation of know-how that will have been provided during the duration of the contract.
Freedom of competition may be restricted by commitments which constitute prohibited practices. These are agreements restricting competition.
Freedom of competition is also restricted by the regulation of activities.