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Cushman v. Kirby

Supreme Court of Vermont
536 A.2d 550 (Vt. 1987)


The Kirbys (defendants) sold a house to the Cushmans (plaintiffs). During negotiations, the Cushmans asked the Kirbys about the quality of water in the house and Mrs. Kirby stated that the water was hard, but that it was treatable, and otherwise okay. Mr. Kirby heard this statement and said nothing in response. In fact, the water was sulfuric, a fact that both Kirbys knew, but did not disclose. The Cushmans relied on Mrs. Kirby’s statement to purchase the house. When they moved in, the Cushmans noticed that the water tasted and smelled bad. They hired a plumber who confirmed that the water was sulfuric. Subsequently, the Cushmans paid to hook the house up to the water supply of a nearby town. The Cushmans then brought suit for misrepresentation. The trial court found in favor of the Cushmans and the Kirbys appealed.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Dooley, J.)

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