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Purchase of agricultural machinery. How can an agricultural producer protect his rights?

When buying agricultural machinery, farmers often face a variety of problems: low quality of goods, breakdowns during operation, low level of warranty service by the seller. Theoretically, the law of the same name has to protect the rights of buyers of agricultural machinery. For example, if during the warranty period the shortcomings of the purchased agricultural machine are identified, the buyer has the right not only to repair it, but also to receive (for the time of repair) a working analogue. If the seller is late in performing the warranty repair work or refuses to do it at all, he must pay an additional penalty to the buyer for each day of delay. However, legal guarantees do not always protect farmers. Unfair terms of contracts
purchase and sale of machinery or violation of the procedure for fixing the defects of the purchased equipment may result in losses due to missed harvesting dates (and not only). The real cases that have to be dealt with in the legal field have become the basis for these practical tips.

Check the complete set of goods

The company purchased a grain drill, but during operation it became clear that, among other shortcomings, it lacks two discs with axles and mounts. The company filed a lawsuit asking the seller to fulfill warranty obligations and replace the discs on the drill. However, the court dismissed the claim because, in accepting the goods, the buyer did not make any claims regarding its equipment, nor did he make any claims against the seller regarding the equipment of the drill during its use.

Clearly state your needs 

The company purchased grain cleaning equipment. However, during operation, it became clear that the quality and performance of cleaning do not match the stated seller.

The buyer appealed to the court to terminate the contract and return the money paid (because due to inaccurate information he bought a product that does not have the required properties). However, the Commercial Court of Kyiv rejected the lawsuit: the case file does not contain evidence of the buyer's appeal to the seller with an order for the selection of equipment for a particular
technological task and / or technological scheme. Instead, the commercial offer contains all the characteristics of the equipment, and the buyer received the relevant technical documentation.

Record the commissioning of the equipment

The company filed a lawsuit to terminate the contract and refund payment for substandard equipment (pneumatic handling unit).

The plaintiff motivated his claims by the fact that the capacity of the equipment does not meet the characteristics specified in the certificate, and the manufacturer does not fulfill the warranty obligations. The local commercial court rejected the lawsuit because the installation passport states that the warranty period starts from the date of signing the commissioning act and the warranty obligations are terminated in the absence of the commissioning act. As the commissioning act was not signed by the parties, the court pointed out that the seller did not have warranty obligations.

Follow the procedure

The company asked the court to recover from the seller the cost of the pre-sowing cultivator, which failed during use. The courts denied this claim: first, the buyer violated the deadline for appeal to the seller with a claim about the quality of the goods, and secondly, the buyer did not have adequate evidence to confirm the defects of the goods (the act was drawn up unilaterally, and the contract for the provision of services for the overhaul of components and units was concluded with a third party organization that had nothing to do with the contract of sale.

How to defend their rights to receive statutory compensation through the purchase of poor quality equipment or improper warranty service?

To increase their chances, the buyer must be responsible for concluding a contract for the supply of equipment. It must provide clear and understandable requirements for product quality, as well as the circumstances in which the risks of damage to the goods pass to the buyer, determine the order of acceptance of goods for quality and the procedure for notifying the supplier of defects found during its operation.
In the future, you should follow the procedure provided by law and the contract to fix the identified shortcomings - this gives grounds to obtain compensation. 

Gevko Andriy,
lawyer, partner of the law firm BARGEN

AgroMarket newspaper, May 2019


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