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Heilbut Symons v Buckleton

[1913] AC 30

Case summary last updated at 01/01/2020 17:20 by the Oxbridge Notes in-house law team.

Judgement for the case Heilbut Symons v Buckleton

 Ds were underwriting shares of what they claimed was a rubber company. P called Ds to inquire about the shares. D said they were "bringing out a rubber company". Based on this statement, P purchased a large amount of shares. The shares turned out not to be for a rubber company at all, the shares did very poorly. P sued for breach of warranty. HL denied P’s claim. 

 Lord Moulton: P could be successful in two ways. First, if the plaintiff could show fraudulent misrepresentation "or what is equivalent thereto, must be made recklessly, not caring whether it be true or not." Second, if there was intent to be held to a promise then there may be a collateral contract, which would bind D to their representation. However, collateral contracts are difficult to find, and, on the fact, none was found. 

 VC Haldance LC: the general principle is NOT to presume that a collateral contract (one aside from the main contract) in the absence of an expression or implication to that effect. 

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