Is there a statute of limitations on when I can sue a previous homeowner

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Is there a statute of limitations on when I can sue a previous homeowner

Is there a statute of limitations on when I can
sue a previous homeowner? We are trying to
sell our home but the backyard floods and it is
causing us issues. It is obvious that this is been
an issue for many years and the previous
owner said in their paperwork there was no
flooding problems. Do I have a viable case to
sue them for the class to install a drainage
system? We have been here for three years.

Asked on May 29, 2019 under Real Estate Law, New Jersey

Answers:

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

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

The statute of limitations in NJ for filing a lawsuit for fraud against the previous owner is six years. It is unlikely that you would be able to compel the previous owner to install a drainage system.
In this type of case, you can recover the benefit of the bargain or your out of pocket loss.
Benefit of the bargain means a defrauded purchaser may recover the difference between the real and represented value of the property regardless of the fact that actual loss suffered might have been less.
Out of pocket determination of damages for fraudulent misrepresentation permits recovery of the difference between the price paid and actual value of the property acquired.


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