Civil fraud encompasses a very broad range of litigation from simple fraudulent oral misrepresentation – “this car was only used by its old lady owner for going to church on Sunday” – to complex serial appropriation of another’s property in a commercial context.

For two distinct reasons, proof of fraud can be difficult. First, there is the legal reason that establishing that an act is fraudulent, as opposed to negligent or mistaken, requires proof to a high degree of probability – see Re H (Minors) [1996] AC 563. In some cases the damages recoverable may be significantly greater as the only limitation is that they must directly flow from the deceit – Smith New Court Securities v Scrimgeour Vickers [1996] UKHL 3. ...

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