ATTWOOD-v-SMALL-(1838)-6-Cl-&-Flyn-232

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					HOUSE OF LORDS

ATTWOOD v SMALL (1838) 6 Cl & Flyn 232

LORD BROUGHAM:

… My Lords, when we apply to this case the principles which I stated at
the outset, we find the facts are wanting; we find there is no
misrepresentation which gave rise to the contract. We find that the
purchasers did not rely upon the representation, but said, We will inquire
ourselves …

From 6 June 1825, downwards, they constantly proceeded upon the plan
of satisfying themselves, first by sending their agents, then by going
down themselves, then by inquiring themselves, then even afterwards by
sending other agents to inquire, and those agents reporting that the
representation was true, and that those parties finding by their own
inquiries that the agents had reported accurately, and that the
representation was corroborated by the result of the inquiry, and that even
when their own interest, when everything in the commercial world was
down, when shares were falling, when money was not to be had, when
they were asking time for a prolongation of the term of payment to Mr
Attwood, and when it was their interest to discover a flaw in the contract,
they then inquire again and send a new agent to inquire, Mr Foster, an
engineer, and they state to him their own opinion to be in favour of Mr
Attwood's representations; and Mr Foster, in answer as late as 26 April,
less than a month before the bill was put upon the file, reports in favour
of Mr Attwood's representations.
…
Such being the facts, even if no observation arose as to the delay, as to
the adoption and affirmance of the contract, purging it of all objections
which might be made, and supposing that they had come in time, instead
of delaying so many months; then I ask myself this question, In these
circumstances have these parties a right to be released from their contract
by the interposition of a Court of Equity, according to those principles
which I have stated? When I ask myself that question upon which alone
my judgment must turn, I am bound to say No …

				
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