Prutch v. Ford Motor Co.

618 P.2d 657 (Colo. 1980)



A plaintiff's burden should be no more than to establish that the defect arose in the course of manufacture-distribution and before the plaintiff purchased the item. A plaintiff who claims breach of warranty, therefore, should be able to satisfy the burden of proof by evidence that at the time of purchase or acquisition the product was flawed in a manner constituting a breach of warranty, and damages resulted. 


Farm machine purchasers filed an action against farm machine dealer and after a mistrial, a jury verdict was entered in favor of plaintiffs against the manufacturer only. Farm machine dealer were not held liable. On appeal, the appellate court reversed the judgment and directed a new trial, holding thatFarm machine purchasers had not met their burden of proof.Farm machine purchasers sought further review Supreme Court of Colorado.


Were the manufacturers liable?




The court held that plaintiffs had satisfied their burden of proof by showing that the machines were defective when they got them, and that crop damage was foreseeable as consequential damages even if not actually foreseen. Thus, the farm machine manufacturer was liable for breach of express and implied warranty. 

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