Thanks to apps like Airbnb, Uber and TaskRabbit and the exploding growth of the sharing economy, millions of people are earning money by putting their spare rooms, cars and time to use. For workers, it brings freedom and extra income. For consumers, there's the one click convenience and cost savings.
But what happens when sharing goes wrong? A dogwalker loses a pet. A guest causes an oven fire. A driver sexually harasses a passenger. Are these companies just online platforms that connect users, immune from offline liability, like eBay and TripAdvisor? Or do they face the same liability as brick and mortar operations like hotel chains and transportation providers? Many companies have begun offering insurance to their users. Will that solve the liability question? What disclosures should companies be providing their users?
Our panel offered their insights on the sharing economy's next legal frontier.
Panel discussion with:
Executive Director, Insurance, Accenture
Partner, Davis Wright Tremaine LLP
Professor Arun Sundararajan
NYU Stern School of Business
Cardozo School of Law
Visiting Professor from Practice
Pictures from the event