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Select the statement that is true of consumer law prior to the 20th century.

  • It was more important than it is now, because consumer products were less sophisticated.
  • The burden of responsibility generally rested on the buyer.
  • It forced sellers to take financial responsibility for any defects in products they sold.
  • It incorporated the concepts of express and implied warranties.

A technician from a utility company walks onto a homeowner's property to read the electrical meter and tramples some flowers that grow under the meter.

Which type of intentional tort does this represent?

  • Misrepresentation
  • Trespassing
  • Invasion of privacy
  • This action does not rise to the level of an intentional tort.

The purpose of contracts is __________.

  • to eliminate any disagreement in economic exchanges
  • to limit personal freedom
  • to bring order to medieval societies
  • to facilitate economic transactions between individuals

A 60-year-old man develops lung cancer, and sues the manufacturer of an asbestos-containing material. The man worked in construction for 45 years, and often used the asbestos-containing material in building projects. He believes that the asbestos-containing material was unreasonably unsafe, because friends of his in the construction trade who used alternative materials did not develop lung cancer.

How strong is the negligence case against the product manufacturer?

  • Strong, because the alternative materials used by his friends were much safer.
  • Weak, because proximate cause is difficult to prove in the absence of other, similarly-affected individuals.
  • Strong, because the manufacturer failed to warn users of the potential dangers of asbestos.
  • Weak, because the manufacturer can claim preemption.

A manufacturer of an electric meter that included surge protectors to prevent damage to the meter from overloads is sued exclusively for strict product liability by an electric company after the surge protectors failed and damaged the electric meters. The manufacturer defends the claim of strict product liability on the basis that the defect in the product only damaged the product itself and there were no personal injuries.

How strong is this defense by the manufacturer?

  • Strong, unless the electric company can provide a reasonable alternative design to the meter that would have mitigated the risk of the surge protectors failing.
  • Weak, because strict product liability applies to defective products even when they do not cause personal injuries or damage a company's property.
  • Strong, because strict product liability does not allow for economic loss occasioned from a defect in a product that only causes damage to the product itself.
  • Weak, because there is no indication that the electric company was aware of the product's defective surge protectors and elected to use the meters anyway.

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