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Limitation in breach of contract

(3 Posts)
girlynut Sat 15-Dec-12 12:10:32

Just want to check with any contract lawyers out there whether I've understood this correctly....

DP and I bought two sofas in Nov 2005 from high street retailer. Advertised as leather (I still have a copy of the ad!). In mid-2011, the material started to fall apart, almost like it was peeling. Called store who refused to do anything as 5 year warranty had expired.

In 2012, I researched online and discovered that Trading Standards had intervened and made retailer change their misleading ads in 2008. I also had the sofas inspected by upholsterer who advised they were made of inferior bicast coated leather, not real leather.

Have written to store requesting an offer of compensation as we'll have to get new sofas but response was a resounding No. Considering whether to issue.

S14(2) SGA implies that sofas would have been of satisfactory quality. Also, there was an express term that the sofas would be leather and this is what I believed I was buying. So I think they've breached both the implied and express terms of the contract.

My concern is limitation. Six years from cause of action, which in contract is when the breach occurred, i.e. the date we bought the sofas. I'm guessing that the fact they didn't fall apart until 2011 and that I didn't know I had a cause of action until 2012 is irrelevant?

Have considered claim for defective goods under negligence but seem to recall that I won't be able to claim for pure economic loss.

Do you think I have any recourse at all here? Pretty cheesed off that a product I thought would last has disintegrated.

Thanks.

girlynut

mycatlikestwiglets Tue 18-Dec-12 09:39:16

You're highly unlikely to have a claim here imo. Your contractual cause of action became time-barred in November 2011 (6 years from purchase) so you are too late on that basis. There is sometimes scope for extending the limitation period where where an action is brought for relief from the consequences of a mistake, in which cases the six year period of limitation doesn't begin to run until the claimant has discovered the mistake or could with reasonable diligence have discovered it. You don't have any kind of negligence claim.

In your case, I think it highly unlikely that a court would find in your favour on the basis of a "mistake". The sofas are still "leather", just not the standard of leather which for whatever reason you thought they were. I suspect that the damage to the fabric will also be considered fair wear and tear by a court given the age of the sofas.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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