Legal Problem Solving Method

Legal Problem Solving Method

Issue: examine the facts and identify potential legal issues

Rule: identify the relevant law

Application: apply the relevant law to the facts

Conclusions: draw conclusions

Case study 1: Contracts for the supply of goods / services / digital content

Toasty Ltd is a business that installs heating systems within homes and commercial properties. Steve is the managing director of Toasty Ltd. He has recently begun to market and install a brand of electrical fireplaces called Lecci-flame. Toasty Ltd has purchased 100 Lecci-flame units from a wholesaler, House-Fire Plc. The fireplaces comprise of an electrical heater and a screen that displays digital images of flames. The fire is controlled by an app that can be downloaded onto the phone of the client. The app offers a choice of different flame and other effects and controls the thermostat of the heater. The Lecci-flame user manual explains that product comes with a licence to use the Lecci-app which is updated regularly.

Steve and his team have installed three units so far. One within a restaurant (ski-chalet themed), one in the home of a young couple and one within the home of an older woman.  In each case the client had discussed their requirements with Steve at the Toasty Ltd showroom, seen a display unit, been provided with a product brochure and had ordered there and then using Toasty’s standard order form. Each job has ended with problems. The clients have all paid in full but are now asking for their money back.

1.            In the restaurant, the installation team accidentally drilled into a water pipe embedded in the wall which leaked and caused damage to the carpet. When the Lecci-flame was eventually installed there was a problem with the digital display. The only option that functions is the ‘relaxing fish-tank’ display. The proprietor of the restaurant is annoyed because when he talked about his requirements with Steve at Toasty Ltd, he had stated that he wanted to create a warm ambience. 

2.            In the home of the young couple, the instillation was fine but when Dan (who had paid for the fire) downloaded the app onto his smart phone, the phone became corrupted and unusable.

3.            After the team had installed the Lecci-flame into the older woman’s home, she (Gloria) asked for a ‘remote control’ so that she could turn the fire on. The team explained that the fire is controlled by a digital app. Gloria said that she didn’t have a smart phone and insisted Toasty Ltd provide her with a remote control. She pointed to an information leaflet about the product which she had taken away from the Toasty Ltd showroom that stated “the Lecci-flame comes with a remote control”. Toasty had been provided with the leaflets by House-Fire Plc.

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