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Imputed Knowledge

The comprehension attributed or charged to a person because the facts in issue were open to discovery and it was that person's duty to apprise himself or herself of them; more accurately described as knowledge.

For example, if the stairway leading to a retail store is defective and a patron is injured on the stairway, the store owner cannot evade liability for the patron's injury by denying knowledge of the defect. Since the store owner is subject to a duty to discover and rectify the defect in an area known to be used by the public, knowledge of the defect is imputed to the store owner.

In the law of agency, notice of facts brought to the attention of an agent (a person authorized by another, known as a principal, to act for him or her), within the scope of the agent's authority or employment, is usually imputed to his or her principal.

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Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationFree Legal Encyclopedia: Hypoxia to Indirect evidence