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Burgdorfer v.Thielemann


No, on both counts.
* An action for deceit is proved by showing the defendant made a statement in order to induce action in the plaintiff that defendant knew to be false. In this case, one of the Plaintiff’s complaints is that the Defendant said he would pay off the mortgage when the Defendant had not intention of doing so. The cases the Defendant cites in support of his appeal do not deal with the tort of deceit, but rather conflict found in contract. The SOF s is not a defense to a charge of deceit.
* The Defendant supports his appeals having to do with the motions for directed verdict by citing cases with similar facts, tried in equity, where the appeals court heard the cases de novo and declined to find for the Plaintiff. We, a court of law do not decide questions of fact. That is for the jury. Rather we determine whether or not there is enough evidence to support a jury’s finding. We find that there was sufficient evidence for the jury’s findings.


The SOF does not apply here, at all. The record indicates that the Defendant intended to pay off the mortgage right away. Therefore, it did not take more than one year to accomplish and the statute of frauds does not apply.
* It is error to say that the SOF does not apply to cases alleging deceit. The purpose of the SOF is to protect against fraud and perjury in cases that stemmed directly or indirectly from the oral promise. This purpose would be defeated if the claimant could claim deceit and not have to follow the SOF.


A finding of deceit, while possible to derive from a set of facts that would lead to a breach of contract, case, is not the same as a breach of contract case and the same rules do not apply.

Black Letter Law: to view the black letter law, scroll down to the LexisNexis Headnotes of this case.  What’s a headnote?

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