The city of Valencia has rebranded itself “Awesometown,” not to be confused with The Lonely Island’s (Andy Samburg and friends) television pilot of the same name.  Valencia is a bedroom community near Santa Clarita, California.  Why Awesometown? A spokesperson for Newhall land (a prime developer of Valencia) reported that after interviewing many residents, they had one common theme “awesome;” “awesome parks, awesome schools, awesome concert series, etc.”  So, what if you were to move to Awesometown expecting it to be, well, completely awesome, but it was nothing like you imagined, could you sue?

Breach Of Contract

When you sign a contract with another party, you are saying that you agree to complete your end of the agreement, and vice versa.  This could mean that you agree to pay a certain amount of money for a stuffed Koala bear, or an agreement to build a spaceship.  However, what if you moved to Awesometown under the premise that it was awesome, but you quickly found out it was nothing like what you thought, could you sue?  The problem with a breach of contract claim is that you would need to show that you were somehow mislead when you signed the contract. Were you promised that “it” would be awesome?  What exactly is “it”?

 Fraud In The Inducement

In many states, if someone uses fraud to convince you to sign a contract, that contract can be held void.  Here, you would have to show that Valencia knew that their town was in fact not awesome, that they still marketed themselves as awesome, and that they knew that this statement would convince you to move there.  Considering how vague the word “awesome” is, it seems unlikely that one would be able to convince a judge that they were fraudulently induced to sign the agreement.

 What do you think?  Should a town be able to be called Awesometown?