Friday, March 23, 2012

Hill v. Gateway 2000 case brief

Hill v. Gateway 2000; (7th Cir, 1997); CB 478; Notes 49
    Applying ProCD rule
  • Facts: the Hills ordered a Gateway computer over the phone. The computer was shipped to them, and there were terms inside the box that said the terms governed unless the consumer returned the computer within 30 days. Terms included an arbitration clause.
  • Issue: Are these terms effective as the parties’ K, or is the K term-free b/c the order-taker did not read any terms over the phone and elicit the customer’s assent?
  • Holding: Terms effective. Hills accepted Gateway’s offer when they kept the computer longer than 30 days.
  • Rule: ProCD rule. No reason not to apply it.
  • Commentary: Judge says that when you’re buying technology stuff, you should recognize that you’re not going to get the terms until you get the equipment.

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