Annals of Consumer Law (Contracts of Adhesion Dept.)

After twenty or so years of reliable service the old fridge had started taking days off. We were not sympathetic.  The outages came without warning, and they did the food no favors. So out with the old and in with the new.

This morning, indeed about 45 minutes prior to the four-hour envelope in yesterday’s email, the delivery truck from Home Depot came bearing a shiny new fridge. They detached the rusty old fridge from its plumbing, carted it away, and attached the new one via the $17.98 “12′ Upgraded Braided Water Line ” which was a consequence of ticking the box asking for installation. Ten minutes after arrival, they and the old fridge were gone, leaving a warning to give the new machine several hours to cool, and even longer to start making ice.

It was not until this afternoon that we noticed that along with a users’ manual they had left this:

"By using ... you agree ... biding arbitration."I would be far more annoyed had stuff like this not been the hypo I gave my students years ago when teaching about so-called ‘clickwrap’ contract terms.  Now I try to be amused.

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