Express Warranty Liability of Remote Sellers: One Purchase, Two Relationships

Abstract

After exploring some history in Part II, I turn in Parts III and IV to materials that illuminate the kinds and nature of relationships that may exist between buyers and remote sellers and point out in Part V that the new drafts do not cover all the bases. In Part VI, I consider the change in marketing practices that necessitate new responses. In Part VII, I briefly discuss developments in the European Community (both within member states and in Community Directives) that point toward increased recognition of remote-seller liability because these changes will apply to American goods sold within the Community and form part of the context in which the revision of Article 2 should be assessed. In Parts VIII and IX, I also consider some cases which on the one hand show the risk for retailers in not having explicit treatment of remote-seller warranties and, on the other, suggest some new arguments for actions against retailers who disclaim warranties. Throughout, I touch on some of the problems that inhere both in the nature of the underlying issues and in the drafts which seek to accommodate them. These include questions in Part X about the enforcement of remote-seller disclaimers and what remedies should be available for breach of remote-seller express warranties. I propose to discuss only matters of economic loss, leaving personal injury concerns to other discussions in this Symposium.

Keywords

Sales contracts, Warranty, Economic loss rule (Torts)

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Authors

Donald F. Clifford (University of North Carolina)

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