A New Warranty Compliance Option for Manufacturers

By Melanie Scherer, The Gary Law Group
May 16, 2017

Many are familiar with the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act: federal laws governing warranties for consumer products which can apply to certain types of window product sales. An important amendment to the MMWA is being implemented by the Federal Trade Commission—the E-Warranty Act.

This update provides manufacturers with the option to provide the warranty by directing consumers to a website for essential terms and related information. Prior to this amendment, the MMWA required warranty terms be on the product or with the product packaging.

Not only does this present obvious cost savings with respect to packaging and printing, but the convenience of providing warranty information online can also serve to streamline claim processing.

Manufacturers opting to disseminate warranty information electronically must provide a website/URL on the product, or in the product manual or packaging, along with a phone number, mailing address or other non-internet based method of accessing the terms of the warranty.

Importantly, only the requirements regarding disclosure have changed. The other MMWA requirements—that warranty terms be clear and conspicuous—have not.

For example, when providing warranty terms online, manufacturers can meet the requirement that limitations on the duration of implied warranties be “on the face of” the warranty by placing such limitation “in close proximity to the location where the text of the warranty terms begins.”

Clearly, it is advisable for manufacturers that choose to take advantage of this new option for distributing product warranties to visit with their lawyers to ensure their website complies.


Melanie Scherer is an attorney with The Gary Law Group, a law firm based in Portland that focuses on legal issues facing manufacturers of windows and doors. Contact her at 503/620-6615 or melanie@prgarylaw.com.