Have I been a victim of fraud and material misrepresentation?

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Have I been a victim of fraud and material misrepresentation?

I had a building insurance claim recently. I already had a builder. The insurance company brought an appraiser to the inspection. The appraiser convinced me to use him for part of the job, arguing that more would be covered by using him. He said I could continue with my current builder also. He kicked my builder off the job, caused huge delays to the urgent natured repair, did very little actually work, waited on the insurance check to be issued. My builders had the job almost completed when this appraiser installed a lock box to prevent them from completing works. This appraiser demanded I give him the check proceeds plus my deductible so he may handle the final stages of my claim, which I discovered was in fact closed, deductible subtracted. He sent a bill for $8543 for 2 days drywall work and is demanding I pay this by Wednesday. He never sent me an estimate for works. I already paid the bulk of the insurance proceeds to my builder who actually did the job. Does this guy have a case against me?

Asked on May 17, 2019 under Insurance Law, Tennessee

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

He may have committed one or both of--
Fraud: lying about what he could or would do, to get you to sign up with him. Also, lying about the cost of the work.
Breach of contract: failing to do what he in fact agreed to do.
While he would be entitled to the fair or reasonable compensation for any work which he agreed to do which he in fact did, that's all he'd be entitled to. If you and he cannot work this out, either on your own with your insurer's intervention, you could refuse to pay, let him sue, and would likely have a defense to at least the amount of compensation he is seeking.
 


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