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Anderson Bros. Corp. v. O'Meara

United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
306 F.2d 672 (5th Cir. 1962)


Facts

Anderson Brothers Corp. (Anderson) (defendant) offered for sale a barge dredge that was designed for digging shallow trenches for burying pipeline under water. Robert O’Meara (plaintiff) needed a dredge to dig wide, deep canals. Testimony at trial indicated that Anderson’s dredge was not suitable for O’Meara’s purposes without expensive modifications. O’Meara saw Anderson’s advertisement and contacted Gier, an Anderson employee. During the discussion, Gier assumed that O’Meara needed a dredge for only shallow digging. O’Meara then sent Kennedy, one of his employees, to inspect the dredge. Kennedy knew a lot about engines, but did not know much, if anything, about dredges. Nonetheless, Kennedy inspected the dredge and approved it for O’Meara’s purchase. After O’Meara received the dredge, he realized that it was not immediately suited for his purposes. O’Meara brought suit based on mutual mistake, among other things. The trial court found that there was mutual mistake as to the dredge’s capabilities and awarded O’Meara damages. Anderson appealed.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Jones, J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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