The property’s age, fair wear and tear, and having reached the end of its useful life do not constitute defects covered by the legal warranty of quality


August 12, 2016 Real Estate and Construction

This post, published on Éditions Yvon Blais’ blog on latent defects on August 9, 2016 (FR), reminds us that a problem/defect affecting an immovable that was discovered after the sale does not automatically constitute a latent defect covered by the legal warranty of quality.

Specifically, and dealing in particular with the judgment in Iammateo v. Forget (Full Text | Fiche Quantum), this post reminds us that the courts are unanimous in concluding that aging, fair wear and tear, and the end of a property’s service life do not constitute latent defects covered by the legal warranty.

The litigator must therefore ensure, before undertaking costly legal proceedings for latent defects for his client, that the damages to the immovable discovered by his client do not stem from a component that was decayed/had reached the end of its service life by the date of the immovable’s sale.

This post also deals with the judgment in Castonguay v. Lapointe (Full Text | Fiche Quantum), in which the court points out that the buyer, “by purchasing a house built over 56 years ago, could not expect a functional drain, as such a drain’s probable lifespan is shorter than this period,” leading the court to conclude that the presence of an inoperative drain that has reached the end of its service life does not constitute a latent defect, and that “anything connected to it must be excluded from the plaintiff’s claim” (our translation).

This bulletin provides general comments on recent developments in the law. It does not constitute and should not viewed as legal advice. No legal action should be taken on the basis of the information contained herein.

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