Alice might be able to sue Celine
First, Bob has made no misrepresentation that induced Alice to enter the contract, so that is a valid and binding contract on both of them - assuming Bob is entirely innocent and ignorant of what Celine did.
Since Celine’s statements did not induce Alice to enter a contract with Celine, misrepresentation is the wrong lens here. The correct lenses are negligent misstatement or fraud.
To successfully sue Celine, Alice will need to show that, at the time Celine made the misstatement:
- She owed a duty of care to Alice
- She failed to live up to the duty imposed, typically the duty to take reasonable care. That is, Celine being wrong is usually insufficient, providing she took reasonable steps not to be wrong
- It was foreseeable to Celine that Alice would act on the information provided; in this case, that it would cause her to enter the contract with Bob
- That Alice suffered damage
- That that damage is directly attributable to the entering of the contract with Bob as opposed to, say, losses that came from poor performance of the contract (by Alice or Bob).
If Celine is just a friend of Alice, then she does not owe Alice any particular duty to be careful in what she says. However, if Celine is in some position of trust, say a business adviser or lawyer reviewing the deal, then she is in such a position.
Alice must prove that Celine:
- Used deception
- to dishonestly
- cause financial harm to Alice.
In addition to allowing Alice to sue for damages, fraud is also a crime punishable by the state.