What is An Implied Warranty?

There are two common types of implied warranties.  One is referred to as an Implied Warranty of Merchantability.  The other is referred to as an Implied Warranty of Fitness.

Implied Warranty of Merchantability

An implied warranty of merchantability is an unwritten warranty to a Buyer that the goods purchased from a merchant conforms to the ordinary standards that one would expect from similar goods. The Uniform Commercial Code provides that a warranty of merchantability applies when: a Seller is the merchant of the goods sold, and the Buyer uses the good purchased for their ordinary purpose.  Therefore, a Buyer may sue for breach of implied warranty where the product does not perform as expected in its ordinary usage.  To have a valid claim for breach of an implied warranty of merchantability, a product must fail to perform as it is normally used.

Example of Breach of Warranty of Merchantability

If an individual purchased a tire tube to repair a flat tire from an auto parts store that required a tube and the tube failed to properly inflate when installed in a tire, such an example could be a case of breach of warranty of merchantability, as the tire tube was purchased from a merchant who ordinarily sold tire tubes and the tire tube failed to perform its ordinary function.  Had the tire tube been purchased as a floatation device to be used in the water, it would be unlikely that such would be considered the ordinary use of the tire tube and that example would fail as a valid case of breach of warranty of merchantability.

Implied Warranty of Fitness

A Warranty of Fitness for a Particular Purpose is a warranty that is implied when the Buyer relies upon a Seller’s representations that an item is proper for the purpose upon which the Buyer intends to use it.  In order for a warranty of fitness for a particular purpose to apply, the Seller must know that the Buyer is relying on his expertise and knowledge of the goods in supplying the correct goods, and the Buyer must actually rely on the Seller’s experience and familiarity of the product.  Where a Buyer has greater skill and expertise than a Seller, Courts are reluctant to find that there is a breach of implied warranty of fitness for a particular purpose.

The Unform Commercial Code does not require that the warranty of fitness for a particular purpose require a Seller that is a merchant.  UCC Section 2-315.  However, it does require that the Seller have knowledge and expertise that the Buyer has relied upon.

Example of Breach of Implied Warranty of Fitness for a Particular purpose

Where a farmer sells another farmer a cow for breeding that the Seller knows the farmer is purchasing as a breeder and the Buyer receives a cow that is sterile and cannot reproduce.  Because the use of the cow was specifically known to the Seller at the time he sold the cow to the Buyer, it is likely that the Seller would be found to be in breach of the implied warranty of fitness for a particular purpose.  This is especially true if the Buyer relied upon the Seller to pick the cow he purchased.

Know Your Rights and Get Professional Advice.

If you are scheduled to appear before a Florida court in a matter in which an implied warranty is an issue, you should seek an experienced attorney for help.  The attorneys at the Law Office of David M. Goldman, PLLC are experienced in civil and criminal cases and they can help you sort out the factors that will help you decide how to proceed.  To schedule a consultation with an experienced attorney, Call (904) 685-1200 today.  Law Office of David M. Goldman, PLLC, 4115 Hendricks Ave., Jacksonville, Florida 32207.  Telephone (904) 685-1200.

About the author

Neil Weinreb is a licensed Florida attorney who has been practicing law for over 17 years in North Florida.  Mr. Weinreb received the highest possible rating from Martindale Hubbell, AV Pre-eminent.  Mr. Weinreb works for the Law Office of David M. Goldman in Jacksonville, Florida.  Mr. Weinreb has worked as an adjunct professor teaching law to paralegal students at Jones College in Jacksonville, Florida.  You can contact Mr. Weinreb at the Law Office of David M. Goldman for a free initial consultation.


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