Bargains made with intoxicated persons are peculiarly likely to have been induced by fraud. No different legal principle covers such cases from that applicable to all cases of fraud, but in view of the obvious impropriety of entering into a bargain with an intoxicated person, such a transaction should be closely scrutinized. It is, of course, not essential in order to make out a case of fraudulent advantage to show that the intoxication was sufficient altogether to overthrow the reasoning powers if it was sufficient to diminish the intelligence, and the party dealing with the intoxicated person knowingly made use of the situation in order to induce the bargain. If such a case has been made out the transaction may be set aside in any proceeding against the fraudulent party.2 Especially if the intoxication was brought about by the other party is there ground for suspecting the good faith of the transaction and reason for Betting it aside.1
96 Daniel on Negotiable Instruments, 214, quoting from Gore v. Gibson, 13 M. &W. 623. "It is just the same as if the defendant had written his name on the bill in his sleep in the state of somnambulism." To the same effect see Green v. Gunsten, 164 Wis. 69, 142 N. W. 261, 46 L. R. A. (N. S.) 212.
97 Page v. Krekey, 137 N. Y. 307, 33 N. E. 311, 21 L. R. A. 409, 33 Am. St. Rep. 731; State Bank v.
McCoy, 69 Pa. St. 204, 8 Am. Rep. 246; McSparran v. Neeley, 91 Pa. St. 17; Smith v. Williamson, 8 Utah, 219, 30 Pac. 763. See also Miller v. Finley, 26 Mich. 249,12 Am. Rep. 306.
99Sec. 24. See supra, 233.
1Gore v. Gibson, 13 M. & W. 623; McCrillis v. Bartlett, 8 N. H. 669; Van Horn v. Hann, 39 N,. J. L. 207; Brockway v. Jewell, 62 Ohio St. 187, 39 N. E. 470.
2Say v. Barwick, 1 Ves. & B. 195. Cooke v. Clayworth, 18 Ves. 12; Holland's Adm. v. Barnes, 53 Ala; 83, 25 Am. Rep. 595; Murray v. Car-Kn, 67 111 286; Henry v. Ritenour, 31 Ind. 136; Waroock v. Campbell, 25 N. J. Eq. 485; Baud v. Howard, 51 Ohio St 67, 36 N. E. 732, 22 L. R. A. 846, 46 Am. St Rep. 550; Birdsong v. Birdsong, 2 Head, 289; Jones v. Mo-Grader, 87 Va. 360, 12 S. E. 792.
3Johnson v. Medticott, 3 P. Wms. 130, note; Wilcox v. Jackson, 51 Iowa, 208, 1 N. W. 513; Newell v. Fisher, 11 Sm. & M. 431, 49 Am. Dec 66; O'Conner v. Rempt, 29 N. J. Eq. 156; Dunn v. Amos, 14 Wis, 106. In Cook v. Bagnell Timber Co., 78 Ark. 47, 54, 94 S. W. 695, the court said: "'In general, courts of equity, as a matter of public policy, do not incline on the one hand to lend their assistance to a person who has obtained an agreement or deed from another in a state of intoxication; and, on the other hand, they are equally unwilling to assist the intoxicated party to get rid of his agreement or deed merely on the ground of his intoxication at the time. They will leave the parties to their ordinary remedies at law, unless there is some fraudulent contrivance or some imposition practised.' 1 Story, Eq. Jur., Sec. 231.
"The rule deductible from this statement, and from all the authorities, is that the contract of a person partially intoxicated at the time will not be set aside because of his intoxication. That condition results from his own act and entitles him to no consideration whatever in either a court of law or of equity. It is not because of his intoxication that courts will annul the contract, but because of some fraud or imposition perpetrated by the person who takes advantage of his condition to make a contract with him. The courts merely grant relief from the fraud or imposition perpetrated. Therefore, while the inadequacy or excessiveness of the consideration for the contract may be a circumstance tending to establish the perpetration of a fraud, it does not, of itself, when good faith is affirmatively shown, constitute such a fraud or imposition as will afford grounds for setting aside a contract, Birdsong v. Birdsong, 2 Head (Tenn.) 290.
"This view, it is argued, puts a partially intoxicated person upon precisely the same plane as a perfectly sober man, with reference to his right to avoid a contract. Not so. One who deals with a sober man upon equal footing owes him only the duty not to mislead him to his prejudice by a material false representation concerning the subject-matter, or by a failure to disclose a material fact within his knowledge which the circumstances may make it his duty to disclose, whereas one who deals with a person whom he knows to be partially intoxicated owes him the duty not to take advantage of his condition by knowingly imposing a harsh contract upon
"In either case equity will give relief from a contract induced by material false representations which were relied upon, or by failure to disclose material facts when peculiar circumstances existed which called for such disclosure; but only in the case of the drunken man will knowledge of the drunkennes, coupled with knowledge of the harshness or improvidence of the contract, be deemed such a fraud or imposition as affords ground for relief."