"Oops! Cruise-Ship Buyer Gets Another Chance to Snag Dramatically Discounted Diamond"

A man who bought a $5 million diamond for about $230,000 from a cruise-ship jeweler will get another chance to argue a deal’s a deal.

In a 2-1 split, Florida’s Third District Court of Appeal on Wednesday ordered a new trial because jurors were improperly instructed when they ruled against shopper Thomas DePrince in 2016. The jury found Starboard Cruise Services was allowed to take back the sale because it made a unilateral mistake and was fraudulently induced by DePrince.

Third DCA Judges Robert Luck and Barbara Lagoa ruled the trial court should have entered a directed verdict in DePrince’s favor on the fraudulent-inducement issue and remanded for a new trial on the unilateral-mistake defense.

The two-judge majority found the trial court ignored a previous appellate opinion that outlined the proper jury instructions, while the dissenter, Judge Edwin Scales, said the majority was having trouble differentiating between holdings and “nonessential, ancillary, gratuitous language.”...

“If the tables were turned and the consumer learned that he had made a bad deal, we are confident that Starboard would be taking the position that the consumer signed a contract, there is no refund and would seek to enforce the deal,” wrote Robert Cohen and Mario Ruiz of McDonald Hopkins in Miami. “Simply put, Starboard should honor the contract it signed! We are looking forward to presenting the facts to a jury of Mr. DePrince’s peers.”

Click here to read the entire article in the Daily Business Review. 

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