I sold my home in CA & disclosed, during heavy rains there is a water drip/seepage in garage. Buyer signed two waivers against a home inspection against her realtors suggestion & my realtors suggestion. The buyer's pest report suggested she put in a french drain. After three years, the seepage is now a big problem. Buyer is now suing me for breach of contract & fraud. Home was sold during rainy season & the disclosure was visible to both realtors & buyer. What recourse do I have in this situation?
3 Answers from Attorneys
If the facts all play out as you indicated, you should have an absolute defense. Request the analysis as to why buyer believes you are liable. We're your disclosures done in writing?
Did you disclose it to them in writing or are you trying to claim you disclosed it because you said nothing and they should have seen it during the walk through?
First, an oral disclosure is insufficient. Real estate disclosures need to be in writing. Your Realtor should know this and should have assisted you in making the written disclosure. Now that you have been sued, your only sensible alternatives are (1) to defend the lawsuit, or (2) to admit a failure to disclose and meet the plaintiff's demands. There are some sub-choices, such as whether to retain a lawyer (highly recommended) and whether to involve your Realtor (if he/she hasn't also been named a defendant). If you fail to defend in court, the plaintiff will probably get a default judgment against you. If you do defend, several outcomes are possible, including complete victory, complete defeat, settlement for something in between, and implication of the Realtor as a co-defendant, picking up some of the liability.......and they are insured and more expert at defending such suits.