Consumer sales – presumption of the defect’s existence upon transferring the risk to the buyer

If a consumer identifies a physical defect within one year after collecting the item, it is presumed that the defect or its cause existed upon transferring the risk to the buyer. This means that if a defect is identified in the said time limit, it is the seller’s obligation to prove that the item was defect-free at the time of issuing it to the buyer.

 

An example: A TV broke down 7 months after its purchase. The seller suspects that the TV was fully functional at the time of sale and its failure was caused by a faulty electrical installation in the buyer’s apartment. However, the failure occurred in less than one year after the TV was issued to the buyer, so the seller cannot refuse to satisfy the buyer’s warranty claims unless their suspicions are proven true. So, unless an expert analysis clearly confirms that the TV’s failure was caused by a faulty electrical installation, it needs to be assumed that the underlying cause was a defect in the TV itself. In such a situation, the consumer’s claims must be satisfied.