Law Embracing 'Misrepresentation' In Contracts

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  • October 18, 2019
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The significance of the time period ‘misrepresentation’ might be inferred from the truth that “free consent” which is inevitable for an settlement to be enforceable below Part 14 of Indian Contract Act, 1872 is rendered unfavourable if misrepresentation is proved. In different phrases, misrepresentation to any get together in a contract in order to induce them for consent renders the contract void.

Part 18 of the Indian Contract Act, 1872 (the “Contract Act”) defines misrepresentation. This part is quoted beneath:

“Misrepresentation” means and consists of –

(1) the constructive assertion, in a fashion not warranted by the data of the individual making it, of that which isn’t true, although he believes it to be true;

(2) any breach of obligation which, with out an intent to deceive, beneficial properties a bonus to the individual committing it, or anybody claiming below him, by deceptive one other to his prejudice, or to the unfairness of anybody claiming below him;

(3) inflicting, nevertheless innocently, a celebration to an settlement, to make a mistake as to the substance of the factor which is the topic of the settlement.”

With regard to contract, the final principal is that if one get together has induced the opposite to enter right into a contract by misrepresentation, although innocently of any materials reality specifically inside his personal data, the get together misled can keep away from the contract. The get together who was induced by misrepresentation to enter right into a contract, has two cures open to him; (i) to elect to rescind the contract, or (ii) to hunt enforcement of illustration and demand upon being positioned in the identical place as if the contract was carried out by claiming damages.”

Underneath Part 19 of the Contract Act, the proper of rescission is obtainable the place consent is brought on by misrepresentation.

Part 19 of the Contract Act supplies for voidability of agreements with out free consent. This part is quoted beneath:

“When consent to an settlement is brought on by coercion, fraud or misrepresentation, the settlement is a contract voidable on the possibility of the get together whose consent was so brought on.

A celebration to a contract, whose consent was brought on by fraud or misrepresentation, could, if he thinks match, insist that the contract shall be carried out, and that he shall be put within the place during which he would have been if the representations made had been true.

Exception: If such consent was brought on by misrepresentation or by silence, fraudulent throughout the that means of part 17, the contract, however, just isn’t voidable, if the get together whose consent was so brought on had the technique of discovering the reality with atypical diligence.

Clarification: A fraud or misrepresentation which didn’t trigger the consent to a contract of the get together on whom such fraud was practiced, or to whom such misrepresentation was made, doesn’t render a contract voidable.”


A, by a misrepresentation, leads B erroneously to imagine that 5 hundred mounds of indigo are made yearly at A’s manufacturing facility. B examines the accounts of the manufacturing facility, which present that solely 4 hundred mounds of indigo have been made. After this B buys the manufacturing facility. The contract just isn’t voidable on account of A’s misrepresentation due to lack of ‘due diligence’.

Part 19A of Indian Contract Act, 1872 states that:-

“When consent to an settlement is brought on by undue affect, the settlement is a contract voidable on the possibility of the get together whose consent was so brought on. Any such contract could also be put aside completely or, if the get together who was entitled to keep away from it has obtained any profit thereunder, upon such phrases and circumstances as to the Courtroom could appear simply”.

A Comparative Research of Correlation Between Misrepresentation and Sale Of Items

Part Three of the Sale of Items Act states that:

“The unrepealed provisions of the Contract Act save in as far as they’re inconsistent with the categorical provisions of the Sale of Items Act, shall proceed to use to contracts for the sale of products”.

Part 12 of the Sale of Items Act, 1930 supplies the distinction between ‘situation’ and ‘guarantee’ and browse as follows:-

“12. Situation and guarantee, – (1) A stipulation in a contract of sale on the subject of items that are the topic thereof could also be a situation or a guaranty.

(2) A situation is a stipulation important to the principle function of the contract, the breach of which provides rise to a proper to deal with the contract as repudiated.

(3) A guaranty is a stipulation collateral to the principle function of the contract, the breach of which provides rise to a declare for damages however to not a proper to reject the products and deal with the contract as repudiated.

(4) Whether or not a stipulation in a contract of sale is a situation or a guaranty relies upon in every case on the development of the contract. A stipulation could also be a situation, although referred to as a guaranty within the contract”.

Additional, Part 13 of the Sale of Items Act, 1930 supplies when ‘situation’ to be handled as `guarantee’, related a part of sub-section (1) & (2) thereof reads as below:-

“13. When situation to be handled as guarantee. – (1) The place a contract of sale is topic to any situation to be fulfilled by the vendor, the customer could waive the situation or elect to deal with the breach of the situation as a breach of guarantee and never as a floor for treating the contract as repudiated.

(2) The place a contract of sale just isn’t severable and the customer has accepted the products or half thereof, the breach of any situation to be fulfilled by the vendor can solely be handled as a breach of guarantee and never as a floor for rejecting the products and treating the contract rejecting the products and treating the contract as repudiated, until there’s a time period of the contract, categorical or implied, to that impact.”

Distinction Between Misrepresentation and Fraud: Clearing the Imbroglio

Definition of Fraud as per Indian Contract Act, 1872:

Part 17:- “Fraud” means and consists of any of the next acts dedicated by a celebration to a contract, or along with his connivance, or by his agent, with intent to deceive one other get together thereto or his agent, or to induce him to enter into the contract:

(1) the suggestion, as a reality, of that which isn’t true by one who doesn’t imagine it to be true;

(2) the lively concealment of a reality by one having data or perception of the actual fact;

(3) a promise made with none intention of performing it;

(4) some other act fitted to deceive;

(5) any such act or omission because the legislation specifically declares to be fraudulent.

Clarification: Mere silence as to details prone to have an effect on the willingness of an individual to enter right into a contract just isn’t fraud, until the circumstances of the case are such that, regard being needed to them, it’s the obligation of the individual conserving silence to talk, or until his silence is, in itself, equal to speech.


(a) A sells, by public sale, to B, a horse which A is aware of to be unsound. A says nothing to B in regards to the horse’s unsoundness. This isn’t fraud in A.


As we are able to infer from the Indian Contract Act, misrepresentation is an harmless act of deceit whereas fraud inevitably consists of the intention to deceive. Because the deception is deliberate, the contract turns into void after fraud is proved whereas in case of misrepresentation the contract is voidable on the possibility of the get together deceived. Nevertheless, each are types of undue affect as per Part 16 of Indian Contract Act.

Bellachi (Lifeless) by LR Vs. Pakeeran JT 2009(4) SC 298

Material of the swimsuit was a deed of sa
le dated seventh October, 1999 executed by the petitioner in favour of the respondent. The quantity of consideration was proven therein to be a sum of Rs. 20,000/.Competition of the appellant within the stated swimsuit was that the stated deed of sale is vitiated by misrepresentation, undue affect, fraud and collusion as she was made to imagine that she would get hold of monetary help by executing the stated doc. In response to her, she had reposed full religion and belief in her brother who used to go to her place usually. The legislation doesn’t envisage elevating of a presumption in favour of undue affect. A celebration alleging the identical should show the identical topic after all to only exceptions. Therefore, the plaint was dismissed.

State of Karnataka and Anr. Vs. All India Manufaturers Group and Ors. AIR 2006 SC 1846

State of Karnataka determined to take up “Bangalore-Mysore Infrastructure Hall Challenge” with a consortium. For the exact same, Memorandum of understanding (MOU) was entered into between the petitioner and a consortium of firms.Authorities order (GO) was additionally handed. Members of consortium entered into an settlement for assigning their respective rights below the GO and MOU in favour of Nandi Infrastructure Hall Enterprises Ltd. Nandi submitted a framework settlement (FWA) which was permitted by the petitioner.One of many key obligations of petitioner below FWA was to make land accessible.Karnataka Industrial Areas Improvement Board entered into an settlement with Nandi for acquisition of personal land. Henceforth, notifications have been issued.FWA was challenged in public curiosity writ petition. The petitioner took the plea that that they had given their consent because of misrepresentation by Nandi. The inference drawn by the Excessive Courtroom was that the plea of fraud and misrepresentation sought to be raised was not solely an afterthought but in addition false to the data of the State Authorities. The Excessive Courtroom, due to this fact, noticed (vide Paragraph 27): “It’s unlucky that the petitioners and the State Authorities have chosen to lift this bogie (sic- bogey) to defeat the general public mission subserving public curiosity. On enchantment, Supreme Courtroom upheld the view of Excessive Courtroom concerning the plea of misrepresentation.

Union of India and Ors. Vs. R.P. Yadav AIR 2000 SC 2252

A contract had been entered between Indian navy and synthetic apprentice. The query handled was whether or not artificer apprentice of Indian Navy who had been given re-engagement for sure interval after acquiring his consent for it entitled to withdraw consent and demand his launch from pressure as of proper. It’s the case of respondant in his writ petition that he agreed to be reengaged was primarily based on the misrepresentation on the a part of the appellants to him that he had solely accomplished 11 years of pensionable service and that he required one other 4 years to earn the pension. As such, it was contended he had a proper to rescind the contract below Part 19 of the Contract Act. The appellants by sending Raj Kumar the “Expiry of Engagement Serial” expressly represented to him that he had put in solely 11 years of pensionable service and that he ought to apply for extension for 4 years to qualify for pension. Subsequently, the court docket held that the consent of synthetic apprentice was obtained by means of misrepresentation.

Sri Tarsem Singh Vs. Sukhminder Singh AIR 1998 SC 1400

Events entered right into a contract on the market of sure land and specific amount was paid to petitioner as earnest cash. Swimsuit for particular efficiency filed when petitioner didn’t execute sale deed and decreed by Trial Courtroom. In enchantment Extra District Choose noticed that each events suffered from mistake of reality as to space of land and sale. Consideration was already paid by the respondent. Decree for particular efficiency was not handed however decree for refund of earnest cash was handed which was confirmed by Excessive Courtroom and Supreme Courtroom. The Supreme Courtroom upheld that the respondent was subjected to misrepresentation by the petitioner because the latter made a false promise to promote the disputed property.

M/s. Arosan Enetrprises Ltd. Vs. Union of India & Anr. AIR 1999 SC 3804

The factual rating depicts that on 24th October, 1989, the appellant furnished a efficiency financial institution assure for $ 29,28,000 and upon financial institution assure being furnished, the Authorities of India assigned the contract to the Meals Company of India (FCI) below Clause 20 of the Settlement. FCI additionally in its flip opened a Letter of Credit score for the total worth of the contract although, nevertheless, because the information depict that whereas on 26th October, 1989, the Letter of Credit score was opened by FCI however its authentication was not effected throughout the supply date i.e. 31st October, 1989. Level to be famous is that the Financial institution, can’t, by merely stating that there was non-supply of products by the appellant, use the phrases “fraud or misrepresentation” for functions of coming below the exception. The dispute as to non-supply of products was a matter between the vendor and purchaser and didn’t, as said within the above determination, present any explanation for motion for the Financial institution towards the vendor.


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