Legal English – Peter’s Pills – Lesson 53 – What do we mean by “agent” of a company?

Legal English for Notaries - By Federnotizie

What do we mean by “agent” of a company?



What exactly do we mean when we say that someone is an “agent” of a company?

An agent is a person or entity appointed by a company to act on its behalf (agire in nome e per conto) in business transactions. A company can appoint (nominare ) a director, employee, or a third-party as its agent.

The key elements you should know are that:

  • In the UK, all directors of a company are considered to be agents of the company. This is because directors are appointed by the company to manage its affairs and make decisions on its behalf, or authorise others to do so.
  • An employee who acts as an agent of the company is subject to the terms of their employment contract and must act within the scope of their authority.
  • A third-party agent appointed by a company must have express or implied authority to act on behalf of the company, and the company will be held liable (sarà responsabile) for their actions within the scope of that authority.
  • A company can limit the authority of its agents by specifying their powers in their appointment or employment contracts.
  • If an agent exceeds their authority, the company may be able to terminate their appointment or seek damages (richiedere risarcimento) for any losses suffered (subite) as a result of the agent’s actions.
  • The company may be bound (vincolata) by agreements entered into between its agents and third parties acting in good faith, provided that the agent has the actual or apparent authority to bind the company in the particular transaction.

Thank you, and see you next time for more Peter’s Pills to improve your legal English.

Read more about the power of directors to bind the company, or authorise others to do so, here: “Companies Act 2006: Power of directors to bind the company“.

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