Digest: Coward v Kramer Ltd., 2018 SKCA 63

Date:August 18, 2019

Reported as: 2018 SKCA 63

Docket Number: CACV 2927 , CA17173

Court: Court of Appeal

Date: 2019-08-18

Judges:

  • Caldwell
  • Whitmore
  • Schwann

Subjects:

  • Contract Law � Breach
  • Statutes � Interpretation � Agricultural Implements Act, Section 36, Section 46
  • Agriculture � Agricultural Equipment � Breach of Warranty

Digest: The appellants appealed the decision of a Queen�s Bench judge that dismissed their claims against the defendants, Kramer and AGCO, under The Agricultural Implements Act. All of the claims related to the plaintiffs� 2010 purchase of a current-model sprayer. The plaintiffs sued the defendants for breach of warranty pursuant to s. 36(4) of the Act. Later they amended their claim to assert that they had exercised their option under s. 46 of the Act to void the contract. The trial judge decided that the plaintiffs had not proven that their statutory warranty, set out in s. 36(4), had been breached because the preponderance of the evidence showed that the sprayer worked well. He also found that Kramer�s contractual documents had not offended s. 46, and further, the plaintiffs were estopped from relying on s. 46 because they had not invoked their right to void the contract within a reasonable time (see: 2017 SKQB 205). The appellants� grounds of appeal were that the trial judge erred in: 1) making his findings that, under s. 36(4), the test of whether an implement �performs well� was objective. They argued that the test was subjective because the judge�s finding gave no effect to the word �well� in the statute; and 2) rejecting their claim under s. 46. The appellants argued that he erred in finding that a document described as the machine order, which contained clauses prohibited by s. 46, was a document internal to Kramer and therefore not caught by s. 46 and had not formed part of the contract between it and the plaintiffs.
HELD: The appeal was dismissed. The court found with respect to each ground that the trial judge had not erred: 1) in finding the test was objective. The court held that the purpose of the Act was to level the playing field between farmers and implement dealers so as to establish contractual fairness and that a subjective analysis of breach, whether subjective to the farmer or to the implement dealer, would be inconsistent with it. In this case, the trial judge had properly assessed the evidence and found that the sprayer worked well; and 2) because he had found that the machine order was
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