A Note On Damages And Disclaimers in Actions for Breach of a "Repair or Replacement" Warranty
Items "normally used for personal, family, or household purposes,"1 which include automobiles and motor homes, fall within the definition of "consumer products" covered by the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act—Federal Trade Commission Improvement Act of 1975 ("MMWA" or "Magnuson-Moss"), 15 U.S.C. § 2101, et seq., and other consumer protection statutes. Consumer products are generally sold with a "limited warranty;" that is, a warranty that promises only to repair or replace defects in material and workmanship at no charge for a specified period. Ever more frequently, the MMWA is being invoked by customers who claim to have experienced problems with their vehicles, and related warranty repairs, especially in states without strong "Lemon Laws." This note examines the measure of damages applied and the treatment of disclaimers in such actions.