Think About These Legal Issues for Your Online Store

You finally overcame all odds and started your online company. You are now a part of the online business community! However, e-commerce businesses still have to abide by laws, and you should, too, for a successful venture.

Consumer Protection

There is no reason to be unfair when conducting your business online- it is your duty to be fair to your customers. Some laws apply to buying and selling goods online. These laws favor the customer in terms of liability and remedy where necessary. Your business is exclusively responsible for all the activities you perform. There can be no secret clauses.

Where you do business outside your country, these foreign countries may have laws in place that govern e-commerce. Be aware that these consumers may have the right to cancel any transaction they deem unsatisfactory (conditions to this are applicable).

In addition, you are responsible for ensuring that your goods and services do not get to the customer with any defect, nor is it dangerous for use. If you fail to abide by this, you may end up looking at a product liability lawsuit where the consumer tries to reclaim money for faulty goods.

As a good businessperson, you can do the following to limit your liability:

· First, check the labels on your package to ensure they do not make any false claims. Do this even if you make the labels yourself, primarily if a third party uses your service for distribution.

· Do business with legitimate companies.

· If you have a manufacturer, ensure you can get alternative solutions for goods if one is faulty.

Data Protection

With the opening of the world market, privacy issues are a concern. When doing business online, your customers give you access to sensitive and confidential information. This private information (PI) includes their credit card number, social security number, address, email address, among others.

As a business owner, you readily accept this information because you want to provide top-notch service to your customers. However, collecting this information now makes you liable for any data violations that may happen. Therefore, you should seek to protect PI in every way you can, using only the information you need.

Protecting your customer’s data is essential because:

· If you leak or use PI without the consent of the customer, you are breaching the law.

· You may end up paying high sums for any data breaches.

· You may find that your customers no longer trust you to handle their business, and they may, in turn, encourage others to do the same.

Intellectual Property Rights

When doing business online, you should be aware of all the registered companies- across the world! Duplicating a company’s business name, business logo, or company slogan may result in fines locally and internationally. Companies even hire an SEO expert witness to ensure that violations of intellectual property rights get legal attention.

Suppose you are a car accident attorney doing business online; you want to consider any trademarks that other attorneys already take. In addition, being a car accident attorney, you do not want your potential clients to see a similar company and choose that above your service. Similarly, any breach of intellectual property rights can have adverse effects.

Suppose you are doing business through a third party. In that case, you need the correct licenses from the company to proceed with business. An SEO expert witness helps you see that SEO standard practices are in place and followed to minimize any exposure to breaches of intellectual property rights. Be aware that any infringement on intellectual property rights can result in millions of dollars as payment for damages.

Like entrepreneurs that operate solely from a brick and mortar, e-commerce business owners must face legal issues. As the world adapts to business online, you will see more robust laws established for future sales. However, while that takes place, ensure you position your e-business on the right side of the law.

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Christophe Rude

Christophe Rude

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