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Old 12-01-2012, 16:15   #1
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Larson Boat Warranty Doesn't Work

Hello,
first of all I Introduce myself, my name's Giovanni and I live in Italy in a beautiful town facing the
adriatic sea, called Marina Palmense.
I decided to write my story because maybe someone can advise me how to solve my problem.
Maybe there's a lawyer that knows how warranty works in USA.
In july 2008 I purchased a new Larson LXI 228.
After only 100 hours of use, divided in four different summer, in the last september 2010 I noticed a
serious osmose problem afflicted my boat, I have to say that I keep the boat in the garage for the
other 9 month, it goes in the water only in the summer. So I contacted the very kind italian seller
who sold me the boat, since he's far away from me (200 miles) he told me to contact a technicians in
my city that prove the osmose. And so I did, the technician come with an electronic machine and
detected an high percentage of osmose on the hull, after that he broke some of the bubbles and a thick
and smelly liquid came out.
I took a lot of pictures and I sent all to the dealer. He contacted Larson company and told them about
my problem because my boat has a warranty and he made a quote to fix the boat.
After four month and several emails I got a response from Larson, they say they can only help with
2500 USD nothing more I must take care for the rest, the problem is that to fix the boat in Italy it
takes more than the double of that as the quote of their seller prove.
I replied them that I don't want any money but I would like to have my boat in perfect order, as
everybody expect after a spending a large amount of money.
Now the italian seller says that he can't do nothing and Larson doesn't want to fix my boat,
they wrote me to "accept the 2500 USD or they withdraw the offer.
In Italy Larson boats are very expensive but, at that time, I decided to buy one just to have an high
quality boat without problem (I believed), to have a "LIFETIME WARRANTY", to have "A BETTER BUILT
BOAT" as they say in their slogans but all I got is an unusable boat ruined by osmose.
Maybe I was unlucky but if warranty exist it must be for a reason.
Now I feel so stupid to have bought a Larson, I feel like I throw my money away.
I worked hard to save money to buy the boat and now I cannot believe that "AN AMERICAN CLASSIC
COMPANY" can treat customers regardless of their problem.
I understand that things can happen but everyone must accept his own responsibility and if there's a
problem it must be solved in a friendly way.
I will be grateful to anyone who can help me finding a solution.
I apologize for my poor english but I hope you could understand.
P.S. I'm sorry if I wrote in the wrong section, but I was a little confused in a new forum.
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Old 12-01-2012, 16:28   #2
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Re: LARSON BOAT WARRANTY DOESN'T WORK

My sympathies.

One of your big issues is time is getting on for a 2008 purchase.

Clearly the company thinks you are too far away to look after.

With the Global Financial crisis the company may be struggling.

I know nothing of the vessel as I am in Australia and do not know the vessel just my thoughts.

Good luck
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Old 12-01-2012, 16:34   #3
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Re: LARSON BOAT WARRANTY DOESN'T WORK

Hello DOWNUNDER

Larson offers a lifetime warranty on the hull and a five year warranty for the osmose, as reported on the warranty.
I understand the crisis but it can not be an excuse to shirk their responsibilities.
Thanks for your reply
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Old 12-01-2012, 17:02   #4
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Re: LARSON BOAT WARRANTY DOESN'T WORK

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, giopapy.

Id advise you to take the offered money, and seek a better quote to effect the repairs.
Otherwise, youll have to get a lawyer, and sue for satisfaction - a very uncertain proposition.
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Old 12-01-2012, 17:26   #5
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Re: LARSON BOAT WARRANTY DOESN'T WORK

Do not back down. Tell them you are going to contact consumer protection agencies in Italy if they do not take care of this problem. The last thing they want is to loose foreign sales. Keep pushing and writing them. Also it may not hurt to contact an attorney in the US who may be able to give them a call and push the issue. Even the threat of a law suit will help them come to their senses. I have been down this road with an out of warranty motor and they finally did the right thing and replaced it (differnet comany).
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Old 12-01-2012, 18:09   #6
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Re: LARSON BOAT WARRANTY DOESN'T WORK

Giopapy, I am an attorney here in the States. I also have an Italian heritage, my grandfather having come from the Po Valley at the turn of the last century as a child. He lived the American dream and with an eighth grade education sent three sons through college and law school. I feel I must reach out to help you, but please understand that I am not licensed to practice any where but in the State of Alabama, USA. Therefore, I cannot represent you, I can only give you general advice. My first advice is to attempt to find local counsel. Do lawyers there work on a contingency, where they only get paid if you win? Also, sometimes, a lawyer, for a small fee will write the company a letter threatening suit which shows that you mean business and they may have to pay a lawyer more to deal with the matter than just doing what they should do and fix your boat.

Is it possible in Italy for you to represent yourself? Is Italy like Britian where the looser pays the attorney fees of the winner?
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Old 13-01-2012, 11:53   #7
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Re: Larson Boat Warranty Doesn't Work

Pjop
I'm so glad to have met you,
today morning, after my posts on the forums, (usually it took several days only to get a reply)
I've received a prompt email from Mr.

Nino Dreger
International Sales Representative

and he wrote:

Dear Mr. Pappalardo:

Larson Boats, LLC takes its warranty obligations seriously. Unfortunately, your boat was not manufactured by us and, therefore, we have no obligation to honor any warranty claims on this boat. Larson Boats, LLC purchased the Larson brand out of bankruptcy and did not assume any warranty obligations as it relates to boats manufactured prior to the acquisition. As a gesture of good faith, we are willing to offer you $2500 towards the repair of your boat. This offer is being made out of goodwill to you as a valued Larson customer.

You may still make a warranty claim against the manufacturer of your boat

Now I'm wondering if they really purchased the Larson brand I think they also
acquire the benefits and the charges.
If what they write is the truth it means that every Larson customer has no warranty on his boat bought before they purchased the brand.
Is this possible ??

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Old 13-01-2012, 16:17   #8
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Re: Larson Boat Warranty Doesn't Work

Quote:
Originally Posted by giopapy View Post
Pjop
I'm so glad to have met you,
today morning, after my posts on the forums, (usually it took several days only to get a reply)
I've received a prompt email from Mr.

Nino Dreger
International Sales Representative

and he wrote:

Dear Mr. Pappalardo:

Larson Boats, LLC takes its warranty obligations seriously. Unfortunately, your boat was not manufactured by us and, therefore, we have no obligation to honor any warranty claims on this boat. Larson Boats, LLC purchased the Larson brand out of bankruptcy and did not assume any warranty obligations as it relates to boats manufactured prior to the acquisition. As a gesture of good faith, we are willing to offer you $2500 towards the repair of your boat. This offer is being made out of goodwill to you as a valued Larson customer.

You may still make a warranty claim against the manufacturer of your boat

Now I'm wondering if they really purchased the Larson brand I think they also
acquire the benefits and the charges.
If what they write is the truth it means that every Larson customer has no warranty on his boat bought before they purchased the brand.
Is this possible ??

personally, i would accept money and run.

Sometimes these type nof manafacturere do go bust.
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Old 13-01-2012, 16:51   #9
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Re: Larson Boat Warranty Doesn't Work

Utterly shameless. Point is, downunder is right. It is useless to fight those Larson people in the US. The best thing you do is take the 2500 US$ - it might cover the material cost for the repair. What you can do is getting hold of them at the Genoa Boatshow, showing pictures of your boat to visitors of their stand.
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Old 13-01-2012, 17:35   #10
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Re: Larson Boat Warranty Doesn't Work

I did something very similar to MacG's suggestion. Within ten minutes of my protest the company (over a warranty dispute) paid me what they owed me. To be safe, have a pre-printed response if people ask you about the boat that JUST STATES THE FACTS that you can hand out. This way Larson cannot claim you were saying anyting other than the facts.
Good luck.
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Old 13-01-2012, 17:40   #11
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Re: Larson Boat Warranty Doesn't Work

Hey Giopapy. It just so happens I happen to represent both creditors and debtors US Bankruptcy Court. Unfortunately, I have to give you the legal disclaimer. I cannot and do not represent you. It is always best to seek out counsel that is licensed to practice in your jurisdiction. The following is only general advice That being said, I can tell you that bankruptcy can in fact severe a companies legal obligations. In order for them to do that they have to receive a discharge order from a judge in a Chapter 7 or Chapter 11 preceding. If, as in here, the new company Larson LLC claims that they are in fact a different company they need to prove it. IF the older company has filed for bankruptcy, it is possible that your warranty is no longer valid. However, in most circumstances, in order for a severing of your rights under the contract (warranty), you should have received notice of the filing of the bankruptcy. If you were not provided notice, you may still have a claim against the company. The question arises which company is liable. The older now defunct or bankurpt company or the new company that brought the name and assets, but not the liability of the first. Unfortunately, the devil is in the details. It appears that Larson LLC is in fact telling you the truth. If he is lying to you would have an incredible fraud case against the company. His company may still be liable for the debt if you didn't receive notice of the bankruptcy but it may cost you quite a bit to fight it in attorney fees. Bankruptcy court is not an area where attorney practice on a contingency basis. It's $150 per hour and up. You could attempt to kill two birds with one stone. Accept the $2,500 along with a copy of the Court order showing that they purchased the company free of all future warranty claims. However, you risk that simply withdraw the offer. On the other hand, that may be a red flag that maybe the company is trying to pull the wool over your eyes. I assume you are talking to a nonattorney at Larson LLC. I think it comes out to be cost-benefit analysis. How bad do you want the $2,500 vs how much has Larson taken from you by selling you an unusable boat. If the boat cost you more than $20,000, I don't think I could be brought off for $2,500 without some documentation supporting his claim that his liability was voided by a US bankrupcty court. I think in asking for the documentation, you explained how much money you were out and asked in a professional manner they would gladly provide you with it. You could then send that order an attorney in the area of the district court that issued the order to determine precisely how it affected you. So the question is, are you a gambling man?
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Old 13-01-2012, 17:57   #12
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Re: Larson Boat Warranty Doesn't Work

This is easy.

Take the $2500.

To do anything else will likely cost you more then what you might gain.

As the lawyer said, are you gambling man?

I know, it hurts and it gets you mad, but it is your best option.
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Old 13-01-2012, 18:09   #13
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Re: Larson Boat Warranty Doesn't Work

Giopapy-like the other attorneys that have replied, I cannot represent you and what I say here is not legal advice. However, since I do smoe work in the Marine industry and am a little familiar with some events that affected Larson, I thought I should reply. This is a pretty egregious example of some of the effects of our legal system. As some may know, Larson ahs built boats in Minnesota for alost 100 years. Some time back, LArson Boats was acquired from the Larson family by Genmar Holdings, a very large marine conglomerate owned and run by Irwin Jacobs. Jacobs pretty much ran the company into the ground. In the economic downturn, Genmar and all its susidiaries including Larson, filed for bankruptcy in 2009. The creditors forced a sale of the company assets. And, to many creditors' great surprise and dismay, in 2010, the court allowed a sale of some of the assets, including Larson, back to Jacobs. When assets are sold out of bankruptcy, the purchaser, even when he is the same guy who ran the company into the ground to start with, buys the assets, in this case Larson, free and clear of all prior claims and liabilities including warranty claims. Jacobs formed Larson Boats LLC to be the new owner. In essence what he purchases was the name, all trademarks, etc. hull molds, the factory near Brainerd.

The real irony in all this is that the "new" Larson now advertises as if none of this occurred and it has been the same company running uniterrupted for over 100 years!

In short, Gio, not to be the bearer of bad news, but there seems to be nothing you can really do from a legal standpooint. The new Larson indeed has no liability for your boat as it was built by the "old" Larson. I am actually surprised they even offered the $2,500. I would take it and do the best I could to get the boat repaired.

Best of luck!
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Old 13-01-2012, 18:29   #14
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Re: Larson Boat Warranty Doesn't Work

I agree that $2500 is better than you'd see after many bankruptcies. This isn't just a US bankruptcy issue. Saab is no longer paying for warranty repairs on its cars (although GM is providing coverage if the car was built while they owned the company).

It's a long shot, but you might try writing Irwin Jacobs with a plea for help. He certainly has enough money to take better care of his past customers. Here's a piece where he said that he would honor warranties -- although it's not very specific. A payment of $2500 might be what he had in mind with the word "honor".

Jacobs & DeJoria to Buy Larson, Seaswirl, Triumph and FinCraft | BoatTEST.com

Carl
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Old 13-01-2012, 18:40   #15
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Re: Larson Boat Warranty Doesn't Work

Quote:
Originally Posted by JayCall View Post
Giopapy-like the other attorneys that have replied, I cannot represent you and what I say here is not legal advice. However, since I do smoe work in the Marine industry and am a little familiar with some events that affected Larson, I thought I should reply. This is a pretty egregious example of some of the effects of our legal system. As some may know, Larson ahs built boats in Minnesota for alost 100 years. Some time back, LArson Boats was acquired from the Larson family by Genmar Holdings, a very large marine conglomerate owned and run by Irwin Jacobs. Jacobs pretty much ran the company into the ground. In the economic downturn, Genmar and all its susidiaries including Larson, filed for bankruptcy in 2009. The creditors forced a sale of the company assets. And, to many creditors' great surprise and dismay, in 2010, the court allowed a sale of some of the assets, including Larson, back to Jacobs. When assets are sold out of bankruptcy, the purchaser, even when he is the same guy who ran the company into the ground to start with, buys the assets, in this case Larson, free and clear of all prior claims and liabilities including warranty claims. Jacobs formed Larson Boats LLC to be the new owner. In essence what he purchases was the name, all trademarks, etc. hull molds, the factory near Brainerd.

The real irony in all this is that the "new" Larson now advertises as if none of this occurred and it has been the same company running uniterrupted for over 100 years!

In short, Gio, not to be the bearer of bad news, but there seems to be nothing you can really do from a legal standpooint. The new Larson indeed has no liability for your boat as it was built by the "old" Larson. I am actually surprised they even offered the $2,500. I would take it and do the best I could to get the boat repaired.

Best of luck!
I suspected this may have been the situation.
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