It’s fairly common for companies to make sweeping claims in the course of day-to-day business. While this can be misleading, it is not particularly illegal. The “puffery doctrine” covers the line between unbridled optimism and misrepresentation.
Although there is some variation from circuit to circuit, as a general matter, under the “puffery” or “corporate optimism” doctrine, the courts have ruled that an alleged misrepresentation is not actionable where:
- It is so vague that it is not subject to being either proved or disproved.
- It is a nonspecific expression of optimism regarding future performance.
- It is a future projection stated as an opinion and not as a guarantee, or which is indefinite as to time.