Maritime Economics & Logistics

, Volume 19, Issue 1, pp 182–187

Liabilities and responsibilities: ocean transportation intermediaries (OTIs) and the distribution of counterfeit goods

Original Article


Whether they know it or not, ocean transportation intermediaries (OTIs) play a crucial role in the distribution of counterfeit goods across the globe. When these companies provide their services to product counterfeiters, they contribute to the proliferation of criminal schemes, and may expose themselves to criminal and civil liability. This article describes how OTIs can be held liable for intellectual property rights violations when they ship counterfeit goods, a subject that should raise serious concerns for OTIs. Additionally, this article proposes several practices that OTIs can adopt to mitigate their exposure to intellectual property rights liabilities. Adoption of these proposals will mean that OTIs will take on a guardianship role, actively contributing to the fight against product counterfeiting.


Counterfeiting Intermediary liability Brand protection Shipping vessels 

Copyright information

© Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center for Anti-Counterfeiting and Product ProtectionMichigan State UniversityEast LansingUSA

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