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Thelawman2, Attorney
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 1575
Experience:  Attorney-at-Law
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A chinese company want to pay me for my marketing advice,

Customer Question

A chinese company want to pay me for my marketing advice, but while I'm doing this I'm affraid.The company / person is paying me more then he earns by himself. I have doubts if all products are legit and not counterfeit items. Can I be liable as person for his online store / business?I'm thinking that because he spend more money for my advice then he finally earns. Like a 20% of profit is for him, and 80% of his profit is paid to me.We don't have a official agreement, do we need a official agreement?Now he just pays me once in a month / few weeks. He will send me 80% of his profit, because I'm the marketing expert in his store and he has with 20% of the money already xx times more then he had before. Can I accept this without any problem?All money is of his business is in his paypal / creditcard account, the shop is on his name, the domain is on his name etc. I'm just giving advice and setting up marketing campaigns, but I have real doubts by some products they want to advertise by me, because I'm thinking it's counterfeit, I told them to them, but I want to know who's wrong when they will be hold liable.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Business Law
Expert:  Thelawman2 replied 10 months ago.

If you are part of the marketing effort and are making statements that are false, then you can be held liable since you know that the statements are false. In fact, if the statements are being made in the US and you are the only person located in the US, it is more likely that you are going to be held responsible rather than the person in China.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
even when he just hire me, I'm liable for his business?Do I have to check all of his products?
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I give him advice how to setup his store, setting up marketing campaigns etc.
Expert:  Thelawman2 replied 10 months ago.

If you are involved at all in the selling of products that could be fraudulent, you could be held responsible for the selling of the fraudulent products. You are not liable for his business, you would be liable for your actions related to the business.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Liable in money or what?
What if he's not paying me for my actions?
Expert:  Thelawman2 replied 10 months ago.

You could possibly be sued by customers who are dissatisfied. Whether you are being paid does not matter.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
how can I protect that, because that mean I can't advice or work for anybody anymore, because I always be responsible instead of the business owner?
Expert:  Thelawman2 replied 10 months ago.

The reason that you could potentially be held responsible is because you have a suspicion that the products are fraudulent. If you did not have any reason to believe that the products are fraudulent, then you couldn't be held responsible.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Ok, I can only warn them and ignore that I don't advertise it for them.What when I don't know it's counterfeit, then I'm not responsible?
Is it a issue that I'm earning more then the owner?
When there is personal injury from the product, will I be liable or only business owner?
Expert:  Thelawman2 replied 10 months ago.

If you are not the owner of the company and only work as a person who provides services for the company, then you cannot be held responsible if you are unaware that it's counterfeit and would have no reason to think that it's counterfeit. The fact that you earn more than the owner is irrelevant. If there is a personal injury from the product, the company selling or manufacturing the product would be responsible, not someone providing services to the company. However, again, if you are advertising for the company and have reason to believe that it would harm people, then you could be held responsible.

Expert:  Thelawman2 replied 10 months ago.

For instance, if it was a pharmaceutical product, and you had reason to believe or did know that the product was manufactured in a dangerous manner, and then you advertised the product, you could be held responsible.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
The company is selling products like jewelry and other general items. I know Chinese have lot of copyright things, but impossible to check all carefully or simple you can't find.
Expert:  Thelawman2 replied 10 months ago.

What do you believe is fraudulent about the products?