Msg#: 4605147 posted 1:05 pm on Aug 27, 2013 (gmt 0)
So, I am freelance web marketer, and I have a client threatening to sue me for getting their Google Adwords account permanently suspended. Does he have a legitimate claim here?
First off, this client's product is very much NOT "family-friendly". So, as I built up the campaign, many of our ads and keywords got disapproved. I received multiple Ad Disapproval emails from Google stating "we do not allow image or video ads containing adult content".
Because these were repeat violations, the account ended up getting suspended.
Now, here are the (3) important pieces of information here...
1) Before being suspended - I told him over the phone that if we continue to submit this type of content, there is a decent chance the account will get suspended. This was not to protect myself from liability, but to be transparent about what was going on. He is actually denying that this phone call ever took place.
2) After being suspended - I told him via email that I mistakenly re-submitted an image ad when posting bulk changes from Editor, which is was the final straw that got us suspended permanently. I wish I hadn't admitted to making a mistake, but I did...
3) There is no written service contract.
I'd also like to note that he didn't have many sales coming in from Adwords or any channel for that matter. He flat out doesn't have a revenue-generating business.
That said, I did the best I could to create Campaigns that would perform as well as they could. My point is, this person's business is certainly not hurting from the lost Adwords account, as I don't think he made more than a couple of sales from it. And that's simply because no one wanted to buy his product.
So, my question is does this person have any legitimate claim to sue?
Msg#: 4605147 posted 7:15 pm on Aug 27, 2013 (gmt 0)
Are you really asking "Can he sue me?" or "Can he win?"
In the US, the answer to the first is: Yes, unless the would-be plaintiff has an existing court order requiring pre-approval of all submitted suits. (This is extremely rare, arising from situations like a successful "abuse of process" suit file by someone else.) By itself this can be either a minor inconvenience or a major expense depending on what level of court it's filed in. For a superior court ("Supreme Court" in New York state) of course they'd have to convince a lawyer to take their case.
In all places, the answer to the second is: Talk to an attorney ;)
Msg#: 4605147 posted 11:43 pm on Aug 27, 2013 (gmt 0)
Most of the time that kind of talk is just an empty threat. Many people use that as a last ditch effort to get something from somebody. I would not worry about it. Not much you can do about it until you get served which will probably never happen. Also for him to win he would have to show damages. There are no real damages because he can just create a new domain and a new website and start over again. As you said he can't prove that he lost anything of real value. If he is real serious he might take you to small claims court.