Gordon v. Butler - 105 U.S. 553 (1881)
U.S. Supreme Court
Gordon v. Butler, 105 U.S. 553 (1881)
Gordon v. Butler
105 U.S. 553
A., wishing to borrow money of B., offered by way of security a mortgage upon his real estate containing sandstone quarries which had not been sufficiently worked to slow their extent and value. He furnished, however, the certificate of two other persons setting forth, each for himself, that he had for more than twenty years resided in the neighborhood of the quarries, and was acquainted with them, and giving, in his best judgment, their value, which was one hundred and fifty per cent more than the amount of the loan. B. took the mortgage and lent the money, which was not paid. Upon a sale under a decree of foreclosure, the land brought less than one-sixth of the amount loaned. B. thereupon sued A. and the other parties to recover damages for the loss sustained, and he charged that they had conspired to defraud him by a false and fraudulent certificate. Held that the action will not lie, the defendants not being liable for an expression of opinion, however fallacious, in regard to property the value of which depends upon contingencies that may never occur, or developments that may never be made.