What Are The Different Ways Amazon Sellers Can RESPOND To Lawsuits When They Begin?
Unfortunately more and more Amazon sellers are getting sued these days.
In fact, we have over a hundred open files with our litigation team. So today I’m going to talk to you about how to respond to a lawsuit. This is law school 101 for Amazon sellers.
I’m going to be talking to you about how a lawsuit begins and how Amazon sellers can respond. So a lawsuit begins by some lawyer writing a document, call the complaint and filing it in court. We’re suing these Amazon sellers. We allege counterfeit.
When you receive a lawsuit, I don’t want you to bury your heads in the sand. I want you to think about how to respond to lawsuits. There are basically two different ways you respond:
Number one: you draft and file an answer to the lawsuit.
Now, if you are an entity like a corporation or an LLC, then your business must be represented by a lawyer. You’re not allowed to represent yourselves. If you operate your Amazon business as a sole proprietorship under your own name and your own social security number, then maybe you want to do this yourself, although I don’t recommend it because the people who are coming after you know, they’re paid big money by the brands to go after you.
So you can respond to the lawsuit, okay? You got the lawsuit. In the answer, you either admit the allegations, you deny the allegations, or you deny having enough information to form a belief as to the merit or the lack of merit to the claims.
While that sounds like a lot of legalese, it’s often true because you’ll have a brand suing you, claiming that you did A, B, C, or D, but it’s only the brand or maybe Amazon that has the information. So you literally go allegation by allegation, and they’re all numbered, one by one, admit, deny, or deny having enough information to respond to the allegation.
Number two: you immediately ask the court to dismiss the entire lawsuit.
There are a couple of different grounds that you have where you can do that….
One of the ways is called jurisdiction. Jurisdiction is nothing more than a fancy word for describing whether or not a particular court, a particular judge has power over you. So in the United States, in order to get sued in New York, you have to have had some relationship with the State of New York. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a federal court or a New York state court. They are two different systems. If you don’t have any connection to the state, you should be out of that case without ever having responded to any of the allegations against you.
Now, there’s another way. You could ask the court to dismiss the case against you on the merits.
Often what you’ll do is the lawyer receives the lawsuit and we review it. I know I read every single one, every single line from beginning to end and a lot of these lawsuits, the way they are written, they don’t assert claims specifically against you. They’ll claim that you are part of a whole bunch of defendants. That might be 30 or a hundred, but there’s no specific claims against you. Then you can ask the court to dismiss the case on the merits because they haven’t alleged facts sufficient to form any claim on the merits against you.
So these are two ways you can respond to a lawsuit.
Here’s the lawsuit, you can answer it and get right in the trenches and fight, or you can ask the court to throw the thing out and end the litigation right then and there, because either the court has no power over you or because, even if the allegations are true, they haven’t spelled out anything wrong that you did as an Amazon seller.
I’ve got the greatest litigation team in the world, bar none when it comes to Amazon sellers. I don’t say that lightly. If you want to reach me, you want to talk to me about how we respond to lawsuits, or if you want to speak to our Managing Attorney, Leslie, contact us. We try to be available to you seven days a week, 365 days a year.