I want to know how to proceed against a seller who lied in the property disclosure statement.

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

I want to know how to proceed against a seller who lied in the property disclosure statement.

Purchased house in 2007. The previous sellers added an addition on to the back of the house about a year before they sold it, We did have an inspection but it was so new nothing but some electrical problems came up, which we had fixed. In the property disclosure the marked no to was anything on the property built without a permit and to, was anything built without following codes. We are now have leaking issues and wood rotting issues, so I wanted to pull the permit to see who built it. There was no permit issued for the addition. The seller is about 4 hours away in KY, will that be a problem?

Asked on June 23, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Tennessee

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You could sue the seller for fraud.  Fraud is the intentional misrepresentation of a material fact made with knowledge of its falsity with the intent to induce reliance on which buyer justifiably relies to his/her detriment.   

Seller's false statement/nondisclosure was made with knowledge of its falsity and the intent to induce buyer's reliance on which buyer justifiably relied by purchasing the property.  Buyer could not have reasonably discovered seller's false statement/nondisclosure.

Your damages (the amount of monetary compensation you are seeking in a lawsuit for fraud) would be either the benefit of the bargain or your out-of-pocket-loss.  Benefit of the bargain means the defrauded purchaser can recover the difference between the real and represented value of the property that was purchased regardless of the fact that the actual loss suffered might have been less.  Out-of-pocket-loss in damages for fraudulent misrepresentations permits recovery of the difference between the price paid and the actual value of the property acquired.

A lawsuit can be filed where the plaintiff resides or where the defendant resides or where the claim arose.  You could file your lawsuit in either TN or KY.  It would be more convenient for you to file in TN where you live for purposes of filing documents with the court and for court appearances.  Since four years have elapsed since you purchased the property, it would be advisable to consider the applicable statute of limitations for fraud in both TN and KY in deciding which state to file the lawsuit.  If the statute of limitations has expired in one state, perhaps it has not expired in the other.  You will need to file your lawsuit prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or you will lose your rights forever in the matter.

 


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption