What is the cause of action against a defendant who makes false statements to a plaintiff?

Saskatchewan, Canada


The following excerpt is from Wesley Purdy v. Woznesensky, 1937 CanLII 173 (SK CA):

A similar cause of action has also been held to arise where the defendant’s conduct has been negligent rather than wilful or intentional as it was in the above case. Thus in Dulieu v. White [1901] 2 K.B. 669, 70 L.J.K.B. 837, the facts were that the defendants’ servant negligently drove their van into a public house and gave the plaintiff, who was the publican’s wife, a fright, she at the time being behind the bar. She, as a result, suffered severe physical injuries. She was held to have a good cause of action. And in Janvier v. Sweeney [1919] 2 K.B. 316, 88 L.J.K.B. 1231, one of two defendants, who was acting for them both, for the purpose of obtaining information from the plaintiff, made false statements to her of a nature likely to frighten her. He did frighten her and so caused her physical injury. It was held that his conduct gave her a good cause of action against them both.

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