Hartman v. Jensen's, Inc.

289 S.E.2d 648

 

RULE:

Those terms or provisions, which do not alert the consumer that the terms are for the purpose of disclaimer, will not be allowed to protect the merchant from action for breach of warranty by the consumer.

FACTS:

Respondents filed suit for negligence and breach of warranties to recover damages for defects in a mobile home manufactured by appellants. The case was referred to a special referee who issued findings of fact and conclusions of law in favor of respondents. The trial court affirmed the referee's findings and the award of damages to respondents for appellants' breach of an implied warranty of merchantability. Appellants sought review of the findings of the Horry County (South Carolina) court.

ISSUE:

Did appellants effectively disclaim any implied warranty of merchantability by terms set out in the contract documents?

ANSWER:

No.

CONCLUSION:

On appeal, the court affirmed the finding of breach of implied warranty of merchantability. Under state law, appellants were bound by an implied warranty that the mobile home sold to respondents was fit for the purpose for which it was bought. Disclaimer of warranty language in appellants' sales contract was confusing and created an ambiguity. Terms or provisions in the sales contract which did not alert consumers that the terms were for the purpose of disclaimer did not protect appellants from an action for breach of warranty.

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