Falsified sellers Property disclosure

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Falsified sellers Property disclosure

I purchased my house from the seller 3 years ago. I’ve had frozen water pipes the last 2 years. The seller noted that there were no

water issues however the plumber I called said he gave the seller a quote on inline heat tape. I also found installed. some heat tape on one of the water lines I fear this will be a large job to fix and that the seller had prior knowledge of this problem. Do I have a case?

Asked on March 21, 2017 under Real Estate Law, Colorado

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

If a seller knew of a significant but hidden or not-readily apparent ("latent") issue and fails to disclose it to a buyer, that may be fraud: a material misrepresentation upon which the buyer reasonably relied, and which was made deliberately to induce him/her to purchase the home. Fraud can provide a basis for recovering compensation, such as the cost to correct the fraudulently hidden issue. However, the statute of limitations (time within which you must bring a lawsuit, or else it is too late and you may not) for fraud in your state is not more than 3 years; depending on the exact time line and when you first did (or should have) become aware of the issue (since there are legal doctrines that can "toll," or extend, the statutory period until the fraud could have been discovered), you may be running out of time. Therefore, you should consult with an attorney *immediately*, to explore filing a lawsuit.


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