What can you do if you were lied to about a real estate transaction?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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What can you do if you were lied to about a real estate transaction?

Our company purchased a mobile home park and was told that all the mobile homes
are owned by the people living in them except 1. After closing, upon trying to
obtain information about 1 trailer that was abandoned, it caused me to check all
of the titles of the mobile homes. It appears they are not titled to the people
living in them and most of them have personal property taxes due on them from
previous people living in the trailer. Would this be a fraudulent real estate
transaction or because we didn’t check this out before closing it’s just our own
problem? Thank you

Asked on July 25, 2018 under Real Estate Law, Indiana


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

It would quite possibly be fraud, since there was a false affirmative representation made and the true state of affairs, while something you could look up, is something that would require you to specifically research the topic; there was nothing obvious about the physical units, etc. which would have put you on notice of a problem or inspired you to check title, and so it would have been reasonable for you rely on the representation made to you rather than conducting independent research. If you sue, it is possible that any given judge might feel otherwise--i.e. that it was incumbant on you to do your own "due diligence" and research title--so winning is not guaranteed. But based on what you write, you have at least a reasonable chance of prevailing if you were to sue for fraud; and if you did prevail, you could recover the costs or losses you could show have or are likely to flow out of the true state of ownership (and tax bills) on the homes.

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.

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