Intellectual property law is complex and often confusing. But if your business is selling products on Amazon.com, you are responsible for ensuring that the products you’re offering are legal and authorized for sale or re-sale. Listing merchandise that doesn’t comply with intellectual property law can lead to the suspension or even the removal of selling privileges.
Legal representatives of products — also called ‘rights owners,’ — have the option of filing complaints against third-party sellers on Amazon they believe are selling products that violate their trademarks, copyrights and patents. Here are several categorizes of products that often lead to these Rights Owner Notice Complaints — and suspension:
- Counterfeit merchandise: Any product that has been illegally replicated, reproduced or manufactured cannot be sold on Amazon. Merchandise that violates copyright, trademark and other intellectual property protections are prohibited.
- Unauthorized and unlicensed merchandise: Items that are not commercially produced and authorized or licensed for sale as a retail product are prohibited.
- Copied media: Books, movies, TV programs, CDs, software, video games and other media products that have been copied, dubbed, duplicated, or transferred without permission of the rights holder are prohibited.
- Transferred media: Media transferred from one format to another is prohibited.
- Promotional media: Promotional versions of media products cannot be sold on Amazon.
- Celebrity images: Products containing celebrity images and/or names cannot be sold without the permission of the celebrity or their legal representative. This covers product endorsements and use of a celebrity’s name or image on merchandise.
Even if you are vigilant about selling products that comply with intellectual property law, mistakes can happen. Account suspension is a risk of selling on Amazon. That’s why we offer the Amazon Income Protection plan. It’s designed to help individuals, families and businesses selling on Amazon better manage the risks of selling on the world’s largest e-commerce site.