Real estate agents working in and around Austin want to do one thing and that is to make their clients happy. The process of buying a house can be rather stressful and the agent understands this. Therefore, they work diligently to show a customer the types of houses they might be most interested in and in areas that fit the requirements. What they cant always do is assure the client that there are no problems with a particular house, for example, structural issues.
Disclosure is a very important component in buying and selling houses. Theres a distinct difference between not knowing there is an issue, and hiding or failing to disclose problems that you are aware of. Its also often hard to distinguish between the two. This is why real estate agents should carry Professional Liability Insurance in Austin, in the event that they are accused of misrepresentation or other actionable offenses.
Accusations of fraud can be extremely damaging
Fraud claims are among the most common causes of action seen from claimants and plaintiffs, and generally speaking, fraud contains an element of intent. Case in point, for a plaintiff to be successful when instigating a claim of fraudulent intent, the plaintiff must convince the judge or jury there was an intentional act by the defendant that was designed to cause harm to the plaintiff.
This means that the real estate agent did in fact make an affirmative statement or purposefully withheld a material fact about which the real estate agent had prior knowledge. Claimed injuries can include diminution of value of the property in question, any costs to repair the defect, replacement costs, lost profits, closing costs, physical and emotional distress, loss of consortium, and the plaintiffs attorneys fees associated with the litigation.
Damages may also include punitive damages, which serve as a punishment to the defendant or as an example to the public to deter others from acting in such a way in the future. The cost to defend such an accusation would be better served by someone with Professional Liability Insurance in Austin. Speak to an agent about any questions or concerns that you may have.