Your clients may recently have requested you defend against a claim for intellectual property infringement or other online content and accessibility claims. Unless you specialize in this area of law, this may be your first such case. But is this trend here to stay in South Florida? Intellectual property infringement and web accessibility trends were steady until recently, with courts in South Florida becoming a hotbed for filings. So, why the sudden change? The COVID-19 pandemic forced once brick-and-mortar businesses to move to an online platform. While consumers rely heavily on what appears to be a seamless ordering process online, the reality of maintaining a competitive edge while shifting online is a challenge. As businesses face reinvention, they also must remain vigilant in understanding the legal requirements. Small businesses, local grocers, tourism-related stores, restaurants, and traditional discount stores that rely on foot traffic adapted quickly to the changing consumer marketplace. Consider the risks and solutions a business faces with an internet presence.

Grocers, clothing boutiques, and specialty stores are among those that cannot afford to expend time deciphering the best online platform to launch a website. Hence, businesses turn to e-commerce platforms or other pre-made themes to for a turnkey virtual business center. The e-commerce platforms provide options for quick set-up at minimal cost. However, a “one size fits all” e-commerce platform is not without problems. Be cautious—know the source of all digital content to avoid lawsuits and lawyer demand letters.