Disclaimers – they won’t necessarily stop a claim Disclaimers – they won’t necessarily stop a claim

Disclaimers – they won’t necessarily stop a claim

31 May 2018 | General

There are a number of misconceptions out there about how disclaimers apply in practice. Yes, disclaimers sound good, but the courts have made it clear that a disclaimer as to the accuracy or otherwise of information or a representation will not be enough (by itself) to defeat a claim if you have provided incorrect information or engaged in misleading and deceptive conduct.

A disclaimer will be one of only a number of factors a court will take into account in determining any liability for misrepresentation or misleading and deceptive conduct. Those factors include the:

  • nature of the transaction
  • sophistication of the parties
  • nature of the information/representation
  • expertise of the person providing the information/representation
  • extent of the disclaimer.

Practical Considerations

It is important to remember that no matter how well worded a disclaimer may be, you cannot rely on it in isolation as a bar to a potential claim. It will simply act as a mitigating factor.

To best protect your interests, you should:

  • Always include a clear and comprehensive disclaimer in any material you might provide to a tenant, preferably in clear large font on the first page
  • Take steps to ensure that any information disclosed to a prospective tenant is as accurate as possible as at the date it is provided
  • Make sure you verify and are happy with any information provided by a third party
  • Not be complacent simply because of the presence of a disclaimer
  • Not include any material you are unsure about or which is outside of your knowledge/expertise.

If you need any assistance to draft a suitably worded disclaimer to best protect your interests, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Michael Donnelly

Michael Donnelly

Lawyer

Freeda Stevenson

Freeda Stevenson

Principal