Fraud & MisrepresentationCalifornia
Fraud & Misrepresentation Attorney
Trust is the key to all business relationships. While there may be times where a misunderstanding or an honest disagreement leads to litigation, a dispute is significantly more difficult to deal with when there are allegations of fraud or misrepresentation. At the same time, many people employ the term “fraud” without understanding its precise legal meaning.
At Valiant Law, our experienced southern California fraud and misrepresentation attorneys can assist you with assessing your particular dispute and advise you on the appropriate steps to take next. Fraud often causes significant financial harm to a business. Whether you are the victim or the accused, it is important to have skilled representation at your side.
What Constitutes Fraud in California?
There are four basic kinds of fraud recognized by California law:
- Intentional Misrepresentation – This occurs when a party to a contract makes an intentionally or recklessly false statement of fact (not opinion) that is intended to defraud the victim. The victim must “reasonably” rely on the false statement and suffer damages as a result.
- Negligent Misrepresentation – This is similar to intentional misrepresentation, except that it applies in situations where the accused did not have a “reasonable basis” to believe its statements were true. In other words, a person may commit negligent misrepresentation if they honestly, but erroneously, make a false statement that induces the victim to act to his or her detriment.
- Concealment – Sometimes it is not what you say but what you do not say. Concealment describes situations where a party commits fraud by concealing or failing to disclose a “material fact” that ultimately causes harm to the victim. In order to prove fraud by concealment, the victim must show the defendant had a “duty to disclose” the fact in question under California law.
- False Promise – This refers to cases where the first party induces the second party to enter into a contract by making certain promises that the first party never had any intention of keeping.
In some cases, notably claims for intentional misrepresentation, a successful plaintiff can seek punitive damages against the wrongdoer, in addition to any compensatory damages arising from the breach of contract. And even in cases where the evidence is insufficient to prove fraud–not every broken promise is a false promise or misrepresentation–an injured party may still be able to recover damages under tort or common law.
Get Help With Your Complex Fraud Case
Fraud and misrepresentation encompass some of the most complicated areas of business law. Every fraud case is unique and requires developing an extensive factual record. That is why if you are involved in any business dispute that may involve fraud, it is important to engage the services of a qualified attorney as soon as possible. Valiant Law specializes in complex business and employment litigation, and we have the resources and the knowledge to provide you with an honest, professional assessment of your situation. Contact us today at 909-254-5771 to schedule a consultation so we can sit down and discuss how we can best help you.