Essex v. Day

In Essex v. Day, 52 Conn. 483, 1 A. 620 (1885), the town of Essex issued bonds that were to be payable in ten years. Through a printer's error, the text of the bonds stated that they were payable in twenty years. The defendant, who had knowledge of the mistake, purchased the bonds. At the end of ten years, the town called the bonds. The defendant refused to surrender them and demanded that the town continue paying interest for the remaining ten years. The Court held that the bonds could be judicially reformed, even in the absence of fraud. Where "instead of actual fraud, there is merely such knowledge, actual or imputed by law, as makes it inequitable for the purchaser to retain his advantage, the court will deal as summarily with that inequitable position of the party" as it would with a case of fraud. Id. at 496.