Products liability law was implemented to protect consumers injured by harmful products. But what happens when victims cannot contact the companies that created or supplied the product that injured them? Such is the case when consumers are injured by counterfeit products purchased through online third-party marketplaces. Consumers are unable to contact the manufacturers who created these products, because their information is not available on the marketplace or on product packaging, or the sellers of these harmful counterfeits, since they use false contact information and can easily disable their marketplace accounts. As a result, consumers are left without a remedy. By adapting contributory liability rules commonly applied to intellectual property law and liability requirements imposed by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”), courts can include online third-party marketplaces within the category of potentially liable parties and provide victims with a means to hold those responsible for the injuries they caused.
Author: Samantha J. Levin
Volume 22, Issue 2