ProfessorMelissa A. Hale
CaseCast™ – "What you need to know"
Brief Fact Summary. Plaintiff Izadi attempted to purchase a vehicle from Defendant Machado Ford, but ultimately did not when he was unable to take advantage of Defendant’s advertised trade-in allowance. The advertisement contained small print indicating it was only good towards two vehicle models and that the trade-in must be worth at least $3,000 to apply to other models.
Synopsis of Rule of Law. A misleading advertisement may operate as an offer based on the misunderstood meaning even if the party creating the advertisement does not subjectively intend for it to be an offer.
Issue. Can Plaintiff bring a breach of contract claim against Defendant?
Held. Yes. Plaintiff may go forward with his breach of contract claim. Based on the allegations in Plaintiff’s complaint, the Court finds it possible that the offer, when objectively considered, was in fact what Plaintiff thought it to be. In considering the terms of the offer, the Court looks at the offer as a whole and may disregard superfine print. The Court will also consider whether there are conflicting or inconsistent provisions. In addition, the Court notes that Defendant may have in fact wanted the public to interpret the advertisement as Plaintiff did.
Discussion. In the present case, Plaintiff misunderstood Defendant’s offer. However, Plaintiff is able to proceed with the breach of contract claim because the offer may have been what he thought it to be when objectively considered and Defendant may have made the advertisement intentionally misleading.