As is refers to a condition used in the sale of a product which sets limits on the warranties that may be availed of. As is implies that the object will be sold as it is in its current condition. This includes any wear and tear or defects that may not be obvious during the time of sale.
As such, when something is being sold as is, the buyer should already be aware of the risk that comes with the purchase. It becomes even more important for the buyer to look the item over carefully, and especially in big purchases, get an expert to examine the item first.
The term as is covers implied but not express warranties, if they are present. This means that if the seller’s description is found to be incorrect, then the buyer may return it. If for example, a television set is sold as is, no refund is required if the appliance breaks down after a few minutes of use. However, if the buyer can prove that the sale was fraudulent or that a certain feature included in the description was not present, then he can claim a refund or some kind of compensation.
In many territories, regulations on as is agreements exist. There are some areas where such a disclaimer is not recognized or is limited.
Consumer protection laws may still set certain liabilities for the sale of damaged products. There are also certain sales which are more complicated to complete under an as is clause. The sale of real estate, for instance, can be complicated because damages to the property may not be the only issue. If there are other issues regarding utilities and land zoning, then this becomes a problem for the buyer. It is for this reason that buyers are often advised to be wary of as is clauses in the purchase of real estate.