Amazon Falls Prey to Lawyer Scam

Recently, Amazon was tricked by a fake law firm into removing a product from their website, which cost the seller $200,000 in sales. An Amazon seller stated his product was removed from Amazon, because of a complaint. Experts state that Amazon is known for not properly vetting seller complaints. The merchant put in an appeal last month, but Amazon could not resolve it for a while which made him lose $200,000.

Before Prime Day in July, the owner of Brushes4Less received a suspension notice for his best-selling product, which was a toothbrush head replacement. The product was suspended because of an intellectual property violation. To resolve the matter, the merchant had to contact the law firm that filed the complaint. However, the law firm did not exist. The number provided did not work and belonged to another firm in Pittsburgh called Robb Leonard Mulvihill. The person who complained was not registered to practice law in Pennsylvania, according to CNBC. The owner of Brushes4Less told his story to CNBC but asked that his name be protected for privacy concerns. Amazon was tricked into shutting down the seller’s #1 product days before the website’s busiest shopping event in the year. The seller complains that Amazon failed to do five minutes of detective work, and complains that Amazon fails to do any work. Hot items become booted and innocent sellers are suspended coming from viral sellers who are masquerading as lawyers. Last year, sellers like Nike and Michael Kors said they have also received violation claims even when they are buying inventory from legitimate distributors. Paul Dworianyn, the founder of Amazon Seller Consulting, says, “Virtually any person can push the right buttons to get Amazon’s attention for particular issues.” Amazon faces many comments from fake lawyers who are actually competitors. The Brushes4Less brand generates about $2 million in sales just from Amazon. He also sells wine tote bags and brushes for auto parts. Amazon did not provide a comment for the Brushes 4Less incident. For sellers, Amazon does not have much to offer by way of guidance in fixing IP issues.

There needs to be a better way of resolving these issues; Texas business litigation lawyers express the need for businesses to be able to work in good faith with their partners. Amazon needs to explore and play around with different options. Amazon receives many complaints, but the internal teams are overwhelmed by these complaints; therefore, they are very slow to react to fake submissions. Amazon can implement new tools and guidelines before removing a product from the website. Amazon will continue to suspend accounts unless they ensure IP addresses and the validity of complaints. Businesses lose a lot of revenue for these mishaps, and even so, some law firms may receive slander even when they are not responsible for filing the complaint. Building guidelines and transparency will prevent problems between the buyer and seller and the law. These complaints are an unfair way of competition.

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What Happens to a Family-Owned Business during Divorce

Divorce in itself is a complex, highly-charged emotional and stressful experience. It can be further complicated when a family business is thrown into the mix. With more than 50% of marriages in the US ending in divorce, and with nearly 90% of businesses being family-owned, the chances that a family business will be part of the property division issue of a divorce is quite high.

There are many issues that will come up with regard to this type of property division, and because of the many legal ramifications, it is important to have competent legal representation overseeing the process. As an article on the website of the Raleigh Law Office of Marshall & Taylor, P.C. states, a divorce lawyer should have a deep understanding of how to protect the client’s rights when it comes to dividing the family business.

The difficulty of dividing the assets of a family business so that is it fair to both spouses depends on many things. Aside from any rancor that the spouses may be feeling towards each other, the business side of the family business will affect the way it will be managed in a divorce. For example, in a single proprietorship or partnership, only the spouses will be affected by the division of assets. In a corporation, there will be other shareholders to consider.

There is also the question of control. If one spouse runs the company without the help the husband or wife, it is more than likely that a buyout will occur. If both spouses are heavily involved in the business, it is possible that they will continue to work in the business after the divorce as no more than partners. The simpler option is for both spouses to agree to sell the business to a third party and divide the proceeds.

According to the website of the business lawyers of Arenson Law Group, PC, a family-owned business, unless otherwise stipulated in the business papers, is community property and will be divided equally to the spouses. The method by which the valuation and division is done will be determined by the circumstances of the divorce itself and the business setup. This is why it’s good to have an understanding of how your business is structured, and why it is important to have a lawyer who is able to understand your business circumstances.

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