Q&As

In what situations can the information held by a principal be imputed to an agent? When are criminal or unlawful actions of an agent imputed to the principal?

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Published on LexisPSL on 27/04/2020

The following Commercial Q&A provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • In what situations can the information held by a principal be imputed to an agent? When are criminal or unlawful actions of an agent imputed to the principal?
  • Can the information held by a principal be imputed to an agent?
  • When are criminal or unlawful actions of an agent imputed to the principal?

Can the information held by a principal be imputed to an agent?

Further information would be required to consider the purpose for which knowledge is to be imputed. For example, is a third party bringing a claim against the principal for a statement made by an agent that does not reflect the principal’s position/knowledge?

The following may assist in considering this question:

  1. in appointing an agent, it is the principal that is bound by the actions of the agent and not vice versa. As such, the acts of the principal cannot be deemed the acts of the agent

  2. in the absence of an express contractual provision requiring the principal to share all relevant information with the agent, there is no obligation for full disclosure by the principal to the agent at common law. However, if the agent is a commercial agent under Commercial Agents (Council Directive) Regulations 1993 (CA(CD) Regs 1993), SI 1993/3053, there is a duty under CA(CD) Regs 1993, SI 1993/3053, reg 4 for the principal to act dutifully and in good faith towards the agent and, in particular, to obtain for its commercial agent the information necessary for the performance of the agency contract. This does not create the imputation of relevant knowledge, but does impose an obligation on the principal to provide relevant information to the agent. See Practice Note: Relationship of

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