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negligent misstatement

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A false statement of fact made honestly but carelessly. A statement of opinion may be treated as a statement of fact if it carries the implication that the person making it has reasonable grounds for his opinion. A negligent misstatement is only actionable in tort if there has been breach of a duty to take care in making the statement that has caused damage to the claimant. There is no general duty of care in making statements, particularly in relation to statements on financial matters. Responsibility for negligent misstatements is imposed only if they were made in circumstances that made it reasonable to rely on them (Hedley Byrne v Heller & Partners Ltd [1964] AC 465 (HL); Caparo Industries plc v Dickman [1990] 2 AC 605 (HL). If a negligent misstatement induces the person to whom it was made to enter into a contract with the maker of the statement, the statement may be actionable as a term of the contract if the parties intended it to be a term or it may give rise to damages or rescission under the Misrepresentation Act 1967 (see also misrepresentation).

Subjects: Law

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