Legal Principles and Key Points
- In the case of Leaf v International Galleries  2 KB 86, the courts held a claim to reject a violation of conditions is more likely to be considered than a claim of misrepresentation.
- If C accepts the goods from a contract for sale that has been performed then even if there is misrepresentation involved, no claim can be successfully made.
- This contract law case is related to sale of goods, misrepresentation and rescission.
Facts of the Case
- Five years after C brought a picture from D, C found out the purchase occurred based on a false representation innocently made.
- C sought to return the picture and asked for the full purchase price in return.
- Was there an innocent misrepresentation made regarding the painter of the picture?
- Can the contract be rescinded?
Held by Court of Appeal
- Appeal dismissed – the contract cannot be rescinded because since the buyer accepted the picture without proper examination under s 35 Sale of Goods Act 1893.
- C accepted and retained the goods because there has not been a lapse of a reasonable time, according to s 35 Sale of Goods Act 1893.
- “A condition is a term of the contract of a most material character, and if a claim to reject on that account is barred, it seems to me a fortiori that a claim to rescission on the ground of innocent misrepresentation is also barred.”
- Innocent misrepresentation cannot be argued as shown by the principle in Angel v Jay  1 KB 666.
- C did not show D that he did not accept the picture within the time.
- C cannot claim a condition was breached nor a innocent misrepresentation.
- “In my judgment contracts such as this cannot be kept open and subject to the possibility of rescission indefinitely. Assuming that completion is not fatal to his claim, I think that, at all events, it behoves the purchaser either to verify or, as the case may be, to disprove the representation within a reasonable time, or else stand or fall by it.”