mistake of fact

Popular Terms
Ignorance or forgetfulness of the existence or non-existence of a fact important to the creation of a legal obligation. In general, a party to a contract cannot plead discharge from its obligations under the contract because it was mistaken in the terms of the contract. Any signed document that does not correctly record what the signatories intended may be rectified by a court on application by any one of its signatories. If a mistake of fact occurs in the proceedings of a case, it is rectified by the court in which it occurred. Also called error of fact.

Use 'mistake of fact' in a Sentence

After being presented with the painter's bill, Gary was outraged that he was charged additional for materials but the courts ruled that the contract clearly stated he was responsible for all materials in addition to labor, whether he read the small print or not and that his mistake of fact did not exempt him from paying the total cost.
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I wanted to purchase the car so I gave him the money and we signed a bill of sale, but it turned out that the seller's friend had crashed the car that morning and hadn't told him yet so I was able to recover because this was a mistake of fact.
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I thought they were making a mistake of fact and I even told them what I thought, but they did not seem to care.
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