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Clara and Joseph decided to renovate their house and add a large, enclosed entertainment area. Having completed an architecture degree, Joseph decided that as the area will be enclosed, a timber...

Clara and Joseph decided to renovate their house and add a large, enclosed entertainment area. Having completed an architecture degree, Joseph decided that as the area will be enclosed, a timber flooring would be the most environmentally friendly material, as well as being the most hard wearing and aesthetically appealing.   Knowing exactly what he wanted and how he wanted the final product to look, Joseph placed an advertisement in the local newspaper on 5 February 2017.   Quotes for floating timber flooring: seeking quotes for the supply and installation of floating timber flooring for an area 100 square metres. Best quote will be considered. Closing date for submissions is 25 February 2017. Quotes to be emailed to XXXXXXXXXX   On 8 February 2017, Marshall, who owns Indoorooms, completed a standard form quote based on $40 per square metre. At the bottom of his quote, Marshall’s quote states: “Provider accepts no responsibility for defects in workmanship.” Marshall emailed the quote as required.   On 12 February, Edward emailed Joseph quoting $38 per square meter. However, due to a power outage caused by a severe storm, neither Joseph or Clara received the email until 16 February 2017.   On the 13th of February, Joseph phoned Marshall and accepted his quote of $40 per square metre. It was agreed that Marshall would commence work the following day.   By the end of the day on the 16th of February, Marshall had laid 55 square metres of the flooring. However, there was heavy rain during the night and when Clara and Joseph inspected the new room in the morning, they found it flooded. Not only was the room flooded, but a portion of the land under the room had subsided and the floor collapsed. It seems that Marshall left the door to the room open to allow the enclosed space to ventilate. This would ordinarily not have been a problem, but a tool bag appears to have placed over the drainage outlet not far from the door. It appears that this may have caused the flooding.   When Marshall arrived to complete his work, Joseph would not let him. Joseph was screaming abuse at Marshall telling him to ‘get out and never come back’. No amount of apologising was calming Joseph, not even offers to complete the work at reduced price. Eventually, Marshall left asking Joseph to contact him so that they could arrange for the work to be completed.   A short while later, when Joseph opened his email, he found Edward’s quote. Joseph phoned him and arranged for him to complete the floor just as soon as the structural issues were corrected. Edward agreed to complete as soon as the floor was structurally sound. At some point during this conversation, Joseph had told Edward he was the cheapest quote.    Both Edward and Marshall are threatening to commence legal action against Joseph and Clara for breach of contract. However, Joseph believes he also has a counter claim against Marshall.   Advice Joseph and Clara of their legal rights and/or obligations, and the likelihood of a successful action being brought by either Edward or Marshall. Your answer MUST be supported by relevant case law.



Oct 07, 2017
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