The Role of Personal Selling In Products Liability Litigation

Morgan, Fred W.; Boedecker, Karl A.
September 1980
Journal of Personal Selling & Sales Management;Fall/Winter80/81, Vol. 1 Issue 1, p34
Academic Journal
This article presents an analysis of the major cases in which salespersons' activities have contributed to liability judgments against companies. The implications of these cases for selling and sales management are also discussed. Three theories of liability have been used to bring actions against firms when salespersons' activities were questioned. These are warranty, misrepresentation, and negligence. Case examples in each of these categories are reviewed in the article. Predicated on the facts of these cases and their resultant verdicts, several guidelines can be offered to salespersons and sales managers. If the product does not meet the additional standards and someone is injured who was expecting such performance, the salesperson's company will be held liable for damages. Timely legal counsel can advise the salesperson concerning the scope of liability resulting from a statement about a product's capabilities. Management can then decide if the company actually desires to create such a warranty.


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