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Published: Fri, 02 Feb 2018
Supply of goods and services act
The area of law which the scenario relates to is the Supply of Goods and Services Act (SGSA) 1982 and the Sale of goods Act (SOGA) 1979. Both acts complement each other by having numerous implied obligations and if these terms are breached then the buyer can seek a remedy under the specific section which applies to them. The implied terms in both acts are very similar to each other such as to the description and quality goods. The purpose of these obligations is to protect the consumer from any contractual breach by the seller .
Define Service And Say Why?
The first question to consider in this scenario is whether John could make a claim for breach of contract against Bash-It Limited under the supply of Goods and Services Act (SGSA) 1982, and if so, on what grounds.
Firstly, there is a need to find out if a contract has been made between John and Bash-it Limited , when a buyer agrees to pay a certain amount for goods or service and in return accepts the goods what they have been offered, this would then assume that an contract has been made between two parties. By looking at the facts in the scenario it is clear that John has expressly entered into a contract for service with Bash-It Limited when he had accepted to pay the sum of £2000 and in return for their service offered by Bash-It Limited.
The contract between John and Bash-It Ltd clearly involves the Supply of goods and Services Act 1982. Section 3 of the implied terms for the SGSA states that the goods will correspond with their description and the buyer relies on the description provided or relies on his own judgement on what the description should be. As seen in the case of Moore v Landauer 1921, where a sale had been agreed for 3,100 tins of peaches which was described as being packed in cases of 30, but when the delivery arrived, they discovered that the tins were packed in cases of 24 although the agreed amount of tins were delivered. This was seen to be a breach of s13 as it did not comply with the contract made and therefore under s13 the buyer could refuse delivery.
In John’s case there is no indication of any description given by the builders for any of the goods supplied, but for John to have accepted a quotation of £2000 from Bash -it Limited, there must have been some sort of description given to enable him to know what type of pool and what type of equipment was going to be used in order for the pool to be build, however, assuming that John had relied on the description given by Bash-It Limited he could therefore look to rely on the principle from Moore v Landauer 1921 and in this case John could seek for a remedy under s3 of the SGSA. This is merely a presumption that John relied on the description given by Bash-it ltd, however, there could be another issue relating to s3, where John could have taken the responsibility himself to find out what the description of the equipment was in order to have the pool built and was happy in his own judgement and did not rely on the description provided by Bash-It limited. As in the case of Harlingdon r Leinster Enterprises Ltd v Christopher Hull Fine Art Ltd 1990 this case involves some art dealers , one of them was asked to sell two oil painting which had been described as being painted by Gabriele Munter who was a German artist. The art dealer was not experienced or had any knowledge that the painting was not by Munter and took the paintings to another art dealer who showed an interest in the paintings so he sent one of his employee to inspect the painting . The seller made it clear that he did not know much about the paintings and that he was not an expert in them, the employee agreed to buy one of the painting for the buyer after examining them. The painting was later discovered not to be by Munter but a forgery, it was held that a claim could not be made by s13 as it was not a sale by description as the buyer had relied on his own judgement and expertise. Nevertheless, if this was the case with John his claim would be unsuccessful.
The other section which maybe of some importance to John is, s4 of the SGSA which states that where goods have been supplied as part of a deal than those goods must be as described, of satisfactory quality and fit for the purpose. *f*
However in deciding whether the water filter supplied by Bash-It Ltd was satisfactory quality and fit for the purpose, there is a need to analyse the situation, in John’s case there is no mention that the water filter supplied by Bash-It Ltd was second hand, assuming that it was and John was made aware of the situation he then might have expected it to have some defects at some point in time. However, if it was new and the defects occur fairly quickly after being installed there is strong evidence that the water filter was not reasonably fit at the time of being installed and therefore would be a breach of s4 and John could seek to make a claim. The case which illustrates this principle is in the case of Crowther v Shannon Motor Company 1975 in this case, the plaintiff purchased a second hand Jaguar car which was described as being in excellent condition ‘inside and out’, but after 3 weeks of driving the car the engine seized up completely. The plaintiff claimed that the car was not reasonably fit for the purpose for which it was required, namely, being driven on the road and was a breach of s13 of the SOGA 1893. It was held by ‘Lord Denning ,MR’ that the fact that the engine seized up after only three weeks was evidence that, at the time of the sale, the car was not reasonably fit for the purpose of being driven on the road and he concluded that the defendant was in breach of the implied condition under s14 of the SOGA
Additionally, section 13 of the supply of goods and services act 1982 states that where a supplier acts in the course of business, that the service will be carried out with reasonable care and skill. In order to proceed there is a need to see what is seen to be reasonable in John’s case, the fact that John agreed to pay £2000 to have the swimming pool built would suggest that he was prepared to a pay a reasonable sum of money but in return expecting the work to be carried out in a satisfactory manner with reasonable care and skill. The fact that Bash- It Ltd was suppose to be a skilled professionals, one would assume that they would make sure the work carried out was to a good standard, they would also use the right equipment and to ensure that everything was done correctly. However, this was not the case with regards to the tiles used by Bash- It Ltd this suggest that they did not act with reasonable care and skill in making such a careless mistake and is in breach of the implied term in section 13. So therefore, John can claim that Bash-It Ltd did not complete the work with ‘reasonable care and skill as a child visiting john with his parents had cut his foot badly from the tiles which was used round the pool which was not suitable for outdoor use, several have cracked and have come loose which has made it dangerous and also within a year a deep crack has appeared at the bottom of the pool.
In relation to the alleged exclusion liability clause on the back of the contract the first point that needs to be considered is whether or not, by the common law rules, the clauses have been incorporated in the contract. In the light of the scenario, the exclusion of liability is printed on the reverse of the contract and there is no mention whether reasonable steps was taken to bring the notice before John prior to the contract is made, so therefore in the light of this argument the exclusion liability will not be incorporated into the contract and will be deemed as void.
To conclude, by looking at the facts of the case it can be said that Bash-It limited were in breach of the contract since they failed to complete the job satisfactorily.
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