Friday, October 16, 2009

Dealer Sued for Selling Urine Soaked Motorhome

Lou Hayes Woodruff purchased a 2002 Alfa motor home in March 2006 from Bretz RV & Marine for nearly $135,000.

When the weather warmed up, the motor home began to smell, Woodruff said in a lawsuit filed in January 2007 in District Court in Missoula, Montana.

Woodruff hired a restoration and janitorial service, which inspected the motor home and found pet urine "in great quantities throughout the entire carpet" as well as urine wicking in some walls. The areas were determined to be "non-salvageable due to extreme amounts of urine," the lawsuit said

Woodruff said she was not informed about the damage before the purchase. She's seeking damages for breach of contract, fraud, breach of good faith and fair dealing and violation of the Consumer Protection Act.

In response to Woodruff's lawsuit, Bretz moved to compel arbitration based on a clause in the purchase contract. The District Court granted the motion.

Woodruff appealed, arguing that the arbitration clause was not within her reasonable expectations as a consumer and because she did not knowingly waive her constitutional rights to a jury trial and to access the court system.

The Montana Supreme Court, in a 4-2 ruling, said the contract met the requirements of an "adhesion contract," in which one party drafts the contract and the other party has no ability to negotiate the terms.
Full Story...
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