If I list items on my website for sale, do I need a permission from the manufacturers to sell their products?

UPDATED: Jan 25, 2014

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If I list items on my website for sale, do I need a permission from the manufacturers to sell their products?

I am in process of launching my on-line business. My last step is to list items for sell. I am looking to generally sell electronics, tablets and cellphones (for example iPad and iPhone). I am going to drop-ship the products directly from manufacturer to my costumers. Also, how should I request for images from them?! Can I just use theirs and add a note on the bottom of the page saying images are not belong to me or that would still be illegal?

Asked on January 25, 2014 under Business Law, New York


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

1) You do not need their permission to resell their products, *unless* the terms or agreement of sale by which they are selling them to you specifically says "not for resale"--if so, then by buying pursuant to those terms, you are contractually agreeing to not resell.

2) You may *not* use their images without permission: if you do, then even if you add a disclaimer, that is still violation of their intellectual property rights (e.g. trademark; copyright) in those images. You'll have to request permission if you want to use their images--and pay them for the images, if payment is something they require in exchange for permission.

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