Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Izadi v. Machado (Gus) Ford, Inc. case brief summary

Izadi v. Machado (Gus) Ford, Inc. case brief summary
550 So.2d 1135 (Fla. 3d DCA 1989)

Machado (D) placed a newspaper ad offering a minimum $3,000 trade-in regardless of the car’s actual value. The ad also contained very fine print that stated that the offer applied only to a specific type of car in stock, and that the offer was based on a trade-in worth at least $3,000.
Izadi saw the ad and attempted to purchase a 1988 Ford Ranger pickup for $3,595 in cash plus trade-in. Machado refused to accept the offer. Izadi sued Machado for breach of contract, fraud, and misleading advertising. The trial court dismissed P’s complaint with prejudice and P appealed.

Does the general rule that a newspaper advertisement is not an offer apply where an ad employs bait-and-switch tactics?


An ad that employs bait-and-switch tactics is interpreted under standard contract principles and not under the general rule that an ad does not constitute an offer.

The court held that the complaint properly alleged that the advertisement contained an objectively unqualified offer to pay at least $3,000 for any trade-in regardless of condition.
The test for the true interpretation of an offer or acceptance is not what they party making it thought it meant or intended it to mean but what a reasonable person in the position of the parties would have thought it meant. Normally an enforceable contract does not arise from an offer contained in an advertisement. The basis for upholding the breach of contract claim is the prospect that this offer was used as bait to be followed by a switch to another deal when the acceptance of that offer was refused by D. It is difficult to find any other purpose when the bold offer is made conditioned on sub-microscopic print to apply to two models not listed in the present ad.

Court ruled for the plaintiff; affirmed in part and reversed in part.

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