California Civil Code – Elements of Fraud and Intentional Deceit

§1:21 Misrepresentation
The defendant must have made a misrepresentation consisting of either:
1. An affirmative misrepresentation — the suggestion, as a fact, of that which is not true by one who does not believe it to be true;
2. A concealment or half truth — the suppression of a fact, by one who is bound to disclose it or who gives information of other facts which are likely to mislead for want of communication of that fact; or
3. A false promise — a promise made without any intention of performing it.

§1:22 Material Fact
The misrepresentation must be of a material fact, essential to the analysis undertaken by the plaintiff and such that the plaintiff would not have acted as he did without it.

§1:23 Knowledge of Falsity
The misrepresentation must be made with a knowledge of its falsity or a knowledge of the effect of concealment of a material fact. This element distinguishes intentional deceit from the related tort of negligent misrepresentation.

§1:24 Intent to Induce Reliance
The defendant must intend to induce the plaintiff to alter his or her position to his or her injury or risk. The intent to defraud or deceive is not required; the plaintiff need only prove the defendant’s intent to cause another to alter his position. (fraud in the context of a contract requires the intent to deceive a party to a contract).

§1:25 Justifiable Reliance
The plaintiff must actually and justifiably or reasonably rely on the defendant’s misrepresentation.

§1:26 Causation and Damage
Reliance on the misrepresentation must cause plaintiff damage; misrepresentations without damage do not support a cause of action for deceit. The misrepresentation must be the proximate cause of the damage. The standard of proof requires that the party claiming fraud must prove the elements of the claim. The claim must be proven by a preponderance of the evidence.

2 thoughts on “California Civil Code – Elements of Fraud and Intentional Deceit

  1. That’s straight out of good old classical CONTRACT LAW, and was my specialty in law school. Too bad I didn’t get much of a chance to practice it, though. Early on I smelled a large RODENT w/ “Smile”, and I’m still PISSED. Not only have they engaged in FRAUD, but also HACKING, THEFT OF INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY (yes, viriginal putting on a copyright watermark on your photos IS THEFT!!!! None of what they’ve done even comes close to ANYTHING legal, and I also wonder what the SEC would think about their “dirty deal” w/ American Greetings?

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