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New Jersey Real Estate Broker Fraud Lawsuit Facts

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Warning – this article does not necessarily include every New Jersey court rule, code or law that may apply to your New Jersey case! The Law Office of Paul DePetris does not guarantee that the statutes, rules, codes, files or forms on this website are the latest versions of the statutes, rules, codes, files or forms, that they lack typographical errors or that they have not changed, repealed or superseded by other federal or state law. This database may include laws that: (1) never became operable due to unmet conditions; (2) expired; (3) were repealed or amended; (4) were declared void by a court of law; (5) or are otherwise invalid. Do not rely upon the statutes, rules, codes, files or forms on this website for any purpose! Before taking any legal action, read all applicable federal and state source law and case law and consult with an attorney for changes. Addresses, hours of operation and directions may change so be sure to check with the court in advance of mailing documents to court or going to any court!!! Some of the webpages on this site do not apply to all types of New Jersey lawsuits, since there are different rules for different case types!

NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE BROKER FRAUD LAWSUITS

WHAT IS NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE BROKER FRAUD?
New Jersey real estate broker fraud occurs in a variety of ways. For most New Jersey home buyers, the purchase of a New Jersey home is the biggest purchase that the New Jersey home buyer will make in their life! Many of us have heard the phrase: “let the buyer beware.” That statement allows little relief to a New Jersey home buyer. That statement does not reflect current law in New Jersey. Here, we have a more ethical approach in business dealings with one another in New Jersey home sales. Therefore, each of us may rely on representations made by another in a New Jersey business transaction. This approach is reflected in a New Jersey law, the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act. Under the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act, “real estate” is land and, if there is an improvement on the land, that improvement as well. The New Jersey legislature recognized New Jersey home sale as a very important issue and decided to include New Jersey real estate broker fraud as a violation of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act. The New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act attempts to eliminate deception in the marketplace. As business expanded in New Jersey, the public was increasingly victimized by fraudulent conduct. The New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act attempts to protect New Jersey Consumer Fraud victims from shady business practices by increasing their leverage in the marketplace. The New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act is aimed at unlawful sales and advertising practices that deceive New Jersey Consumer Fraud victims into purchasing many kinds of goods and services, regardless of whether those practices involve affirmative misrepresentations or the failure to disclose crucial information. The New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act emphasizes disclosure of information that helps New Jersey Consumer Fraud victims to make informed decisions when buying goods and services. By allowing New Jersey Consumer Fraud victims losing money or property as a result of New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act violations to recover triple their losses, the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act seeks to discourage unfair and deceptive sales practices and to force businesses to take action to prevent consumer fraud. For example, in many transactions, the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act requires New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate agents and New Jersey real estate salespeople to make certain discloses. New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate agents and New Jersey real estate salespeople failing to properly disclose that information may result in a New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act violation without the need to prove that the New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salesperson acted in bad faith or otherwise intended to violate the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act. Also, by allowing New Jersey Consumer Fraud victims to bring their own lawsuits against New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salespersons violating the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act, it is designed to help consumer fraud victims recover their losses. Individuals who prove that they lost money or property from violations of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act may recover money damages for their losses, refunds, get fraudulent contracts cancelled and eliminate fraudulent debts. By letting victims of New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act violations recover their reasonable attorney’s fees and certain litigation expenses, the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act encourages New Jersey Consumer Fraud victims to hire New Jersey attorneys, since the New Jersey Consumer Fraud victims have the opportunity to recover certain money spent prosecuting their New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act claims. Because the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act is a law designed to help New Jersey Consumer Fraud victims, New Jersey Courts are supposed to interpret the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act in a liberal way rather than in a way that might favor the victimizing New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salesperson. For example, New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act claims do not require proof of any of the following:
• New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salesperson’s bad faith
• New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salesperson’s intent (when the New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salesperson’s conduct involves an affirmative act)
• The existence of a written contract between the New Jersey consumer and the New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salesperson
• The New Jersey consumer is a resident of the State of New Jersey
• The New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salesperson’s business is located in the State of New Jersey
• The New Jersey consumer is not a business
• The product or service was purchased primarily for personal, family or household purposes

New Jersey real estate broker fraud can also occur under New Jersey law developed by New Jersey judges over time - common law, called New Jersey legal fraud and New Jersey equitable fraud.

TYPES OF NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE BROKER FRAUD LAWSUITS
There are many types of New Jersey real estate broker fraud lawsuits, such as:
• New Jersey Consumer Fraud real estate broker lawsuits
• New Jersey legal fraud real estate broker lawsuits
• New Jersey eqiutable fraud real estate broker lawsuits
Some New Jersey real estate broker fraud lawsuits involve violations of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act, legal fraud and equitable fraud claims at the same time.

DOES THE NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD ACT APPLY TO NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE BROKERS, NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE AGENTS AND NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE SALESPEOPLE?
The New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act applies to New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate agents and New Jersey real estate salespeople. New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate agents and New Jersey real estate salespeople may violate the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act if they fail to tell a New Jersey buyer about a defect that they know about but not readily observable to the New Jersey buyer if the broker intentionally concealed the information intending for the New Jersey buyer to rely on the concealment and the information is material to the sale. New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate agents and New Jersey real estate salespeople may violate the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act if they engage in affirmative misrepresentations or knowingly omit information about the New Jersey home, even if the New Jersey buyer hired their own inspector. New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate agents and New Jersey real estate salespeople may violate the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act when representing New Jersey home builders and New Jersey home developers in New Jersey real estate sales, such as where the New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate agents and New Jersey real estate salespeople give inaccurate information to New Jersey buyers about workmanship or fail to warn New Jersey buyers about certain facts

Often, a New Jersey homeowner has the right to rely on representations made by a New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salesperson of New Jersey homes. New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act prohibits New Jersey real estate agents, New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate salespeople and other professional New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salespersons of New Jersey homes from committing certain types of conduct. There are three possible ways for New Jersey real estate agents, New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate salespeople and other professional New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salespersons of New Jersey homes subject to the restrictions of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act to violate the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act. The following are examples of New Jersey consumer fraud lawsuits involving New Jersey real estate brokers and/or New Jersey developers:
• A New Jersey real estate broker representing a New Jersey builder of New Jersey homes allegedly failing to disclose off-site physical conditions known to the New Jersey builder and not readily observable by the New Jersey home buyer which made the New Jersey home much desirable or valuable to an objectively reasonable New Jersey buyer.
• The New Jersey real estate agent of a New Jersey developer was liable for the developer’s affirmative misrepresentations to New Jersey home buyers where the New Jersey real estate agent never verified the information provided by the New Jersey developer.
• A New Jersey realtor described an inexperienced New Jersey builder who had a history of poor workmanship as having built hundreds of homes and being one of the best New Jersey builders and noted for his attention to detail and craftsmanship
• A New Jersey real estate agent allegedly failed correct a statement by the New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salesperson that there had been no leaks or problems with the New Jersey home’s roof or ceiling, when in fact prior roof repairs were performed to the New Jersey home.
• A New Jersey real estate agent allegedly characterized a New Jersey home’s termite infestation as “minimal” while another New Jersey agent described the New Jersey home as “riddled” with termites and the first New Jersey real estate agent allegedly had knowledge of the second New Jersey real estate agent’s statement.
• A New Jersey real estate broker’s alleged misrepresentation about the neighborhood in which a New Jersey house is located.

HOW CAN NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE BROKERS, NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE AGENTS AND NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE SALESPEOPLE AVOID NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD LAWSUITS
In certain situations, New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate agents and New Jersey real estate salespeople can avoid violations of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act, such as where they have no actual knowledge that the information they provide is false, misleading or deceptive and they make a reasonable and diligent inquiry to find out if the information they provide is false, misleading or deceptive.

HOW DOES THE NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD ACT ACHIEVE ITS PURPOSE IN NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE BROKER FRAUD LAWSUITS?
New Jersey Consumer Fraud triple damages, also called New Jersey Consumer Fraud treble damages, are available to certain New Jersey Consumer Fraud plaintiffs. The tripling of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud award is meant to punish the New Jersey Consumer Fraud defendant. To win New Jersey Consumer Fraud triple damages under the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act, a New Jersey Consumer Fraud plaintiff must prove that the New Jersey Consumer Fraud plaintiff lost money or property as a result of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud defendant’s New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act violation. The New Jersey Consumer Fraud plaintiff is allowed to receive an award of money for the New Jersey Consumer Fraud plaintiff’s Consumer Fraud loss proximately caused by the New Jersey Consumer Fraud defendant. If the New Jersey court finds that the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act was violated and the New Jersey court awards New Jersey Consumer Fraud damages, the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act requires the New Jersey court to triple whatever amount of damages that the New Jersey court awards to the New Jersey Consumer Fraud plaintiff. If the New Jersey court award damages to a New Jersey Consumer Fraud plaintiff, the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act also requires the New Jersey court to compel the New Jersey Consumer Fraud defendant to pay whatever reasonable attorney’s fees that the New Jersey Consumer Fraud plaintiff incurred in the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act case. Only a New Jersey judge decides the proper amount of a New Jersey Consumer Fraud attorney’s fee award.

DOES THE NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD ACT APPLY TO COMMERCIAL NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE PURCHASES?
It is unlikely that the New Jersey purchase of a hotel is covered by the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act.

DOES THE NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD ACT APPLY TO NEW JERSEY RESIDENTIAL APARTMENT RENTALS?
In certain situations, New Jersey professional landlords may be held liable for New Jersey Consumer Fraud. The following are situations where a New Jersey professional landlord could be found responsible for violating the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act:
• Using fraudulent practices to deceive a New Jersey tenant to sign a New Jersey lease.
• Fraudulently ending an ongoing New Jersey tenancy.
• Raising a New Jersey tenant's rent above rates set by applicable municipal rent control ordinances.

DOES THE NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD ACT APPLY TO NEW JERSEY HOMEOWNERS WHO SELL THEIR OWN NEW JERSEY HOME?
If a New Jersey homeowner sells their own New Jersey home and they don’t sell New Jersey real estate frequently to make a profit, the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act does not apply to the sale.

DOES THE NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD ACT APPLY TO CONDOMINIUM SALES?
If New Jersey sellers and marketers of condominium units commit fraud, they can be held responsible for violations of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act.

DOES THE NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD ACT APPLY WHEN BANKS SELL NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE TO MAKE A PROFIT?
If a bank sells New Jersey real estate to make a profit, they can be held responsible if they violate the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act.

NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD SECTION 2 VIOLATIONS
The New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act is a consumer protection law that states:

The act, use or employment by any person of any unconscionable
commercial practice, deception, fraud, false pretense, false promise,
misrepresentation, or the knowing, concealment, suppression, or omission of
any material fact with intent that others rely upon such concealment,
suppression or omission, in connection with the sale or advertisement of any
merchandise or real estate, or with the subsequent performance of such
person as aforesaid, whether or not any person has in fact been misled,
deceived or damaged thereby, is declared to be an unlawful practice;
provided, however, that nothing herein contained shall apply to the owner or
publisher of newspapers, magazines, publications or printed matter wherein
such advertisement appears, or to the owner or operator of a radio or
television station which disseminates such advertisement when the owner,
publisher, or operator has no knowledge of the intent, design or purpose of the advertiser.

The New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act provides strong remedies for New Jersey real estate broker fraud victims that prove they were victims of New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act violations, stating:

Any person who suffers any ascertainable loss of moneys or property,
real or personal, as a result of the use or employment by another person of
any method, act, or practice declared unlawful under this act or the act
hereby amended and supplemented may bring an action or assert a
counterclaim therefor in any court of competent jurisdiction. In any action
under this section the court shall, in addition to any other appropriate legal
or equitable relief, award threefold the damages sustained by any person in
interest. In all actions under this section, including those brought by the
Attorney General, the court shall also award reasonable attorneys' fees, filing
fees and reasonable costs of suit.

Any person violating the provisions of the within act shall be liable for
a refund of all moneys acquired by means of any practice declared herein to
be unlawful.

The refund of moneys herein provided for may be recovered in a
private action or by such persons authorized to initiate actions pursuant to
P.L.1975, c. 376 (C. 40:23-6.47 et seq.).

NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE BROKER NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD AFFIRMATIVE ACT VIOLATIONS
The first type of New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act violation involves affirmative acts – something that New Jersey real estate agents, New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate salespeople and other professional New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salespersons of New Jersey homes do voluntarily. Affirmative acts do not have to be physical acts, since they can also be any steps taken voluntarily by the New Jersey real estate agents, New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate salespeople and other professional New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salespersons of New Jersey homes to advance a plan or design or to accomplish a purpose. Under the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act, it is unlawful for certain New Jersey real estate agents, New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate salespeople and other professional New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salespersons of New Jersey homes to engage in any of the following type of affirmative acts:
• unconscionable commercial practice -- an activity in the public marketplace, which is basically unfair or unjust, which materially departs from standards of good faith, honesty in fact and fair dealing.
• deception – conduct or an advertisement which is misleading to an average consumer to the extent that it is capable of and likely to, mislead an average consumer. It does not matter that, at a later time, it could have been explained to a more knowledgeable and inquisitive consumer, nor need the conduct or advertisement actually have misled the consumer. It is not important that the New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salesperson may have acted in good faith. Instead, it is the capacity to mislead that is important.
• fraud -- a perversion of the truth, a misstatement or a falsehood communicated to another person and creating the possibility that that other person will be cheated.
• false pretense -- an untruth knowingly expressed by a wrongdoer.
• false promise -- an untrue commitment or pledge, communicated to another person, to create the possibility that that other person will be misled.
• misrepresentation -- a statement made to deceive or mislead. An untrue statement, made about a fact which is important or significant to a sale or advertisement and which is communicated to another person to create the possibility that the other person will be misled.

NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE BROKER NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD KNOWING OMISSION VIOLATIONS
The second type of New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act violation involves acts of omission – New Jersey real estate agents, New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate salespeople and other professional New Jersey real estate broker, New Jersey real estate agent or New Jersey real estate salespersons of New Jersey homes’ failure to do something that the law requires be done. Omissions that violate the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act consist of any of the following:
• knowing concealment of any material fact.
• suppression of any material fact.
• omission of any material fact.

NEW JERSEY LEGAL FRAUD LAWSUITS INVOLVING NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE BROKERS, NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE AGENTS AND NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE SALESPEOPLE
New Jersey legal fraud is a type of claim that developed by New Jersey judges’ decisions in various New Jersey lawsuits over the course of time. New Jersey fraud may be either actual or constructive. For example, silence in the face of an obligation to speak may be New Jersey fraud. If a New Jersey fraud defendant deliberately makes false representations intending that they be communicated
to others for the purpose of inducing reliance, the reliance element of the New Jersey common law fraud claim may be satisfied by proof of indirect reliance by a New Jersey home buyer. Also, a person or business committing New Jersey fraud cannot normally defend themselves by alleging that the New Jersey fraud victim should have been more careful or wiser.

New Jersey legal fraud requires the New Jersey home buyer to prove five elements through clear and convincing evidence: (1) a material representation by the New Jersey defendant of a presently existing or past fact; (2) knowledge or belief by the New Jersey defendant of its falsity; (3) an intent that the plaintiff rely upon it; (4) reasonable reliance by the New Jersey home buyer; and (5) resulting damage to the New Jersey home buyer.

IF I PERFORMED AN INVESTIGATION OF THE NEW JERSEY HOME BEFORE SALE, AM I UNABLE TO PURSUE A NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE BROKER FRAUD CLAIM?
Even if you had a New Jersey home inspector perform a New Jersey home inspection of your New Jersey home or hired an attorney to represent you at your New Jersey home sale closing, that does not automatically prevent you from recovering damages for New Jersey real estate broker fraud. An independent investigation of a New Jersey home by a New Jersey buyer’s own inspector or of a builder’s qualifications or representation of the buyer by counsel at closing shall not always stop a New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act case. In the following New Jersey Consumer Fraud lawsuits, New Jersey real estate brokers, New Jersey real estate agents and New Jersey real estate salespeople faced potential liability for New Jersey Consumer Fraud affirmative misrepresentations or New Jersey Consumer Fraud omissions even where the New Jersey home purchasers conducted an independent investigation of some kind or were represented by a New Jersey attorney at their New Jersey home closing:
• In a New Jersey fraud lawsuits involving responsibility for repair of a dam that has a foundation resting, in part, on two New Jersey home properties, responsibility for the dam became an issue in 2004, when the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) directed the New Jersey home purchaser to submit for its approval plans to remove or repair and maintain the dam. Plaintiffs brought a New Jersey consumer fraud case against their New Jersey realtors, claiming that until DEP contacted the New Jersey home purchasers, they didn’t know the dam was on their New Jersey property or that they had any responsibility for it.
• In a New Jersey consumer fraud case involving a termite infested New Jersey home, the New Jersey home purchasers hired a termite inspector.
• In a New Jersey consumer fraud case involving the construction and sale of a new New Jersey home, the New Jersey home buyers conducted their own investigation of a New Jersey builder before agreeing to buy one of New Jersey builder’s homes.

WHAT TYPE OF DAMAGES CAN A SUCCESFUL NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE BROKER NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD VICTIM RECOVER AND HOW DOES A NEW JERSEY HOME BUYER PROVE THEY SUFFERED DAMAGES UNDER THE NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD ACT?
New Jersey Consumer Fraud triple damages, also called New Jersey Consumer Fraud treble damages, are available to certain New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victims. The tripling of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud award is meant to punish the New Jersey Consumer Fraud defendant. To win New Jersey Consumer Fraud triple damages under the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act, a New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victim must prove that the New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victim lost money or property as a result of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud defendant’s New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act violation. The New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victim is allowed to receive an award of money for the New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victim’s Consumer Fraud loss proximately caused by the New Jersey Consumer Fraud defendant. If the New Jersey court finds that the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act was violated and the New Jersey court awards New Jersey Consumer Fraud damages, the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act requires the New Jersey court to triple whatever amount of damages that the New Jersey court awards to the New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victim.

IF I AM A NEW JERSEY VICTIM OF NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD IN A NEW JERSEY HOME SALE CONTRACT SITUATION, CAN I DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT?
The following are some of the remedies available to New Jersey consumer fraud victims:
• Cancellation or New Jersey fraudulent debts.
• New Jersey Consumer Fraud treble damages for New Jersey ascertainable loss of money or property caused by the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act Violation.
• New Jersey attorney’s fee award for prosecuting the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act Violation or defending against lawsuits by contractors to collect a fraudulent debt.
• New Jersey Consumer Fraud refund of money lost due to the home sale’s New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act Violation.

Whenever there is a fraud in the execution or consideration of a New Jersey home sale contract, the New Jersey real estate broker fraud victim defrauded at any time thereafter may institute a New Jersey lawsuits to recover the money owing on such New Jersey home sale contract although, by its terms, the debt contracted or the money secured to be paid thereby is not then due or payable; and the New Jersey fraud victim may, upon discovery of the fraud, either rescind the New Jersey home sale contract entirely and recover the money or property obtained by the fraud, or, sue on the New Jersey home sale contract to recover thereon.

In certain situations, a New Jersey home buyer could assert that, since the New Jersey home sale contract was the product of fraud, a New Jersey home buyer is entitled to rescind the New Jersey home sale contract and/or to recover the money and/or lien on property obtained under same.

New Jersey home sale contract rescission is the equivalent of New Jersey home sale contract cancellation. It is an equitable remedy which is only available in limited circumstances. Aside from situations where parties consent to New Jersey home sale contract rescission, New Jersey home sale contracts may normally only be rescinded where there is either original invalidity, fraud, failure of consideration, a material breach or default. Even where grounds for New Jersey home sale contract rescission exist, the remedy is discretionary in nature. New Jersey home sale contract rescission will not be granted where the party seeking same has not acted within a reasonable time or where substantial performance has already occurred. Indeed, delay in the rescission of a New Jersey home sale contract is evidence of an election to treat a New Jersey home sale contract as valid. However, the duty to rescind a New Jersey home sale contract does not first arise until the party seeking New Jersey home sale contract rescission discovers the grounds for same. To grant New Jersey home sale contract rescission, a New Jersey court must be able to return the parties to their position before they entered into the New Jersey home sale contract. Accordingly, a party cannot usually simply rescind a New Jersey home sale contract and at the same time keep possession of goods or services received under the New Jersey home sale contract. To complete a New Jersey home sale contract rescission following partial performance, the party seeking to rescind the New Jersey home sale contract must return or tender the consideration previously received. New Jersey home sale contracts are subject to rescission where they are obtained by fraud. Indeed, the very existence of a fraudulently procured New Jersey home sale contract causes damage, so that where fraud is found, damage may be presumed. In the absence of actual fraud, undue influence or misrepresentation, New Jersey home sale contract rescission will not be permitted.

A unilateral mistake of a fact unknown to the other party to a New Jersey home sale contract is not ordinarily grounds for New Jersey home sale contract rescission. To qualify for such relief, a party must show special circumstances justifying a departure from the generally controlling principle that parties are bound by the New Jersey home sale contracts they make for themselves. Accordingly, the circumstances providing for New Jersey home sale contract rescission due to a unilateral mistake fact are: [1] the mistake is of such a great consequence that to enforce the New Jersey home sale contract as actually made would be unconscionable; [2] the matter as to which the mistake was made must relate to the material feature of the New Jersey home sale contract; the mistake must have occurred notwithstanding the exercise of reasonable care by the party making the mistake; and [4] the requested New Jersey home sale contract rescission cannot cause serious prejudice to the other party, except for loss of bargain.

ARE NEW JERSEY ATTORNEY’S FEE AWARDS AVAILABLE TO A SUCCESFUL NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE BROKER NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD VICTIM?
If the New Jersey court award damages to a New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victim, the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act also requires the New Jersey court to compel the New Jersey Consumer Fraud defendant to pay whatever reasonable attorney’s fees that the New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victim incurred in the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act case. Only a New Jersey judge decides the proper amount of a New Jersey Consumer Fraud attorney’s fee award.

WHEN IS A NEW JERSEY HOME SALE CONTRACT INVALID BECAUSE IT WAS ENTERED INTO THROUGH FRAUD?
In the absence of a trust or confidential relationship, statements of opinion or matters of judgment, though known to be false when actually made, do not constitute New Jersey fraud. However, false representations as to material elements of the New Jersey home sale contract are grounds for rescission. Fraudulent misconduct is not excused by the credulity or negligence of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud victim or by the fact that the New Jersey Consumer Fraud victim might have discovered the New Jersey Consumer Fraud through prior investigation.

Purposeful concealment can be as destructive as an affirmative false statement. There exists a duty upon a New Jersey party to a New Jersey home sale contract to disclose to the other New Jersey party facts basic to the transaction if the first party knows that the other is about to enter into the transaction under a mistake as to the facts and that the other, because of the relationship between the parties, the customs of the trade or other objective circumstances, would reasonably expect disclosure of the facts. Where such a duty to speak exists, the failure to speak constitutes unfair conduct likely to cause harm. An unconscionable bargain is one such as no person in their senses and not under delusion would make and as no honest and fair person would accept.

HOW DO I PROVE NEW JERSEY COMMON LAW FRAUD IN A NEW JERSEY REAL ESTATE BROKER FRAUD CASE?
Under New Jersey common law, there are two types of New Jersey common law fraud: New Jersey equitable fraud and New Jersey legal fraud. To prove a claim for New Jersey common law equitable fraud, a New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victim must show the following:

• a material misrepresentation of a presently existing or past fact;
• made with the intent that a New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victim rely upon it; and
• detrimental reliance by a New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victim.

Even an innocent misrepresentation can constitute New Jersey equitable fraud justifying rescission of a New Jersey home sale contract. But the only remedy available for New Jersey equitable fraud is equitable in nature: rescission or reformation of the New Jersey home sale contract.

To prove a claim for New Jersey common law legal fraud, a New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victim must show the following:

• a material misrepresentation of a presently existing or past fact;
• knowledge or belief by a New Jersey Consumer Fraud defendant of its falsity;
• made with the intent to mislead the a New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victim;
• that such misrepresentation was justifiably relied upon by a New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victim; and
• that a New Jersey real estate broker New Jersey consumer fraud victim sustained damages therfrom.

DOES THE NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD ACT APPLY TO ORAL NEW JERSEY HOME SALE CONTRACTS?
• You don’t always need a written contract to have a New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act case.
• The New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act applies equally to both oral misrepresentations & written ones.
• Not every erroneous statement is an affirmative misrepresentation prohibited by the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act.
• To constitute an affirmative misrepresentation, the statement must be:
o a statement of fact made contemporaneously with the formation of the bargain;
o material to the transaction;
o made to induce the New Jersey buyer to make the New Jersey purchase; and
o found to be false.
• The New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act claimant does not have to receive the misrepresentation to have standing.
• If the misrepresentation is made to someone acting as the New Jersey consumer’s agent & the agent was thereby induced into entering into a New Jersey home sale contract with the merchant, the New Jersey consumer has standing to bring a New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act claim.

DO I HAVE TO HAVE A WRITTEN NEW JERSEY HOME SALE CONTRACT TO HAVE A NEW JERSEY CONSUMER FRAUD ACT CASE?
• You don’t always need a New Jersey oral or written contract to have a New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act case.
• Privity of contract = having a New Jersey home sale contract with someone else.
• Privity of contract is not a prerequisite to New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act standing.
• If representations are made in connection with the New Jersey sale of merchandise, indirect promises are actionable.
• Parties may conclude a New Jersey home sale contract for the New Jersey sale of goods notwithstanding whether they agreed upon a price.
• The absence of privity of contract no longer bars a buyer from reaching through the chain of distribution to a product’s manufacturer.
• But absence of a New Jersey home sale contract may affect a New Jersey party’s amount of New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act damages.

NEED HELP WITH YOUR NEW JERSEY CASE?
Handling your New Jersey case wrong from the beginning may only cost you more money and time in the end!! Do it right the first time by seeking legal advice from a competent New Jersey lawyer!
Let the Law Office of Paul DePetris help you with your New Jersey case. Not all New Jersey lawsuits require you to pay expensive legal fees to get legal help.

WHY SHOULD NEW JERSEY PRO SE PLAINTIFFS AND NEW JERSEY PRO SE DEFENDANTS SEEK HELP FROM A NEW JERSEY LAWYER?
Handling your New Jersey case wrong from the beginning may only cost you more money and time in the end!! Do it right the first time by seeking legal advice from a competent New Jersey lawyer!
Many New Jersey pro se plaintiffs and New Jersey pro se defendants make the mistake of not consulting a New Jersey lawyer before filing New Jersey Court papers only to later learn that the New Jersey pro se plaintiffs and New Jersey pro se defendants made serious mistakes that could cause them to lose their New Jersey case. Let the Law Office of Paul DePetris help you with your New Jersey case.

CAN I RELY ON NEW JERSEY COURT PERSONNEL FOR LEGAL ADVICE?
New Jersey Court employees cannot give you “free” legal advice and a New Jersey Court judge may refuse to let you claim that you were right in taking an action (or in deciding not to take action) because you relied on advice from such employees. Most New Jersey Court employees are not trained New Jersey attorneys and therefore, they may not know what advice to give you. Working at the New Jersey Court as a non-judge is not the same as practicing law.

CAN I RELY ON NEW JERSEY COURT FORMS PROVIDED BY THE NEW JERSEY COURT?
The New Jersey Court usually provides certain types of New Jersey Court legal forms to the public and those forms are often very helpful. However, beware relying on New Jersey Court forms provided by the New Jersey Court – the New Jersey Court forms are often deceptively simple, while New Jersey lawsuits often are much more complex than they first appear to be. There is simply no substitute for a competent New Jersey attorney licensed to practice law in New Jersey who has experience handling New Jersey lawsuits. New Jersey Court forms don’t talk and New Jersey Court forms and their directions rarely, if ever, cover every possible situation, set of facts or legal issue that may arise in a New Jersey case. Each New Jersey case has its own particular legal issues and therefore, its own challenges. If you can afford a competent New Jersey attorney, it is best to have the New Jersey attorney prepare your New Jersey Court paperwork for you.

CAN I HANDLE A NEW JERSEY CASE MYSELF?
Many New Jersey pro se plaintiffs and New Jersey pro se defendants can and do successfully handle New Jersey lawsuits, from filing the first paperwork to the collection of a New Jersey Court judgment. However, many other New Jersey pro se plaintiffs and New Jersey pro se defendants also make mistakes that lead to the dismissal of their New Jersey lawsuits or that result in the entry of a New Jersey Court money judgment against them. The greater the money at stake, the greater the reason to consider using the services of a competent attorney licensed to practice law in New Jersey to handle part or all of the New Jersey case. The following are reasons to use an attorney to handle part or all of your New Jersey case:
• New Jersey Court fees often change
• New Jersey Court rules often change
• New Jersey Court employees cannot give you “free” legal advice and a New Jersey Court judge may refuse to let you claim that you were right in taking an action (or in deciding not to take action) because you relied on advice from such employees
• New Jersey Court forms available on websites may not cover every situation you may face in Court
• each New Jersey case has its own particular legal issues and therefore, its own challenges
• it is very common for New Jersey pro se plaintiffs and New Jersey pro se defendants to file inadequate or incorrect New Jersey Court complaints that result in the New Jersey Court complaints or answers to New Jersey Court complaints being rejected by the New Jersey Court or being dismissed by the New Jersey Court after filing and before or after trial because of procedural deficiencies.
• it is not uncommon for judges to get very frustrated by an unrepresented party’s lack of preparation or ignorance of the facts or law of the New Jersey case.
• a Court has the power to punish unprepared New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants, such as by throwing their New Jersey case out of Court or limiting what they can present at the New Jersey Court trial.
• New Jersey has many published lawsuits, laws, regulations, Court rules and rules of evidence that can be very tricky to understand and that can be used to prevent you from doing much of what you want to do at the New Jersey Court trial.
• it is very common for Courts to refuse to allow a party to use or refer to documents or items at the New Jersey Court trial that the person themselves never prepared. Often New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants stumble into New Jersey Court with a video, photograph, bill or affidavit or other form of written statement, thinking they are going to use it as proof that they lost money or that they are not responsible for someone else’s damages, only to have a New Jersey Court judge tell the New Jersey plaintiffs and New Jersey defendants that it is not going to even consider such items or documents.
• without the proper preparation, items and documents may never be considered by the New Jersey Court. Also, if there are any legal issues to be dealt with at the New Jersey Court trial, you must be prepared to argue them, which may require you to refer to Court rules, evidence rules, laws, regulations or published lawsuits.
• you cannot show up at the New Jersey Court expecting the judge hearing your New Jersey case to explain Court rules, evidence rules, Court procedure or the details of the law that applies to your New Jersey case. The judge hearing your New Jersey case is not permitted to give you legal advice.

It is important to remember that even if you have an attorney, you could lose your New Jersey case. Hiring an attorney to handle part or all of your New Jersey case does not guarantee your success. However, it may provide what is needed to win your New Jersey case or to avoid certain mistakes.

DOES THE LAW OFFICE OF PAUL DEPETRIS HAVE EXPERIENCE HANDLING NEW JERSEY LAWSUITS?
Yes. Paul DePetris has performed the following tasks:
• handled New Jersey lawsuits for plaintiffs and defendants across New Jersey, from Bergen County New Jersey to Cumberland County New Jersey, including representations of individuals, small businesses and large corporations.
• settled New Jersey lawsuits for plaintiffs and defendants across New Jersey.
• reviewed many New Jersey Court settlement agreements.
• enforced many New Jersey Court settlement agreements.
• provided New Jersey pro se plaintiffs and New Jersey pro se defendants with New Jersey Court legal advice and prepared New Jersey Court legal forms
• prepared and filed many New Jersey Court complaints
• tried New Jersey Court jury trials
• mediated many New Jersey lawsuits
• argued New Jersey Court motions
• handled New Jersey Court proof hearings
• handled New Jersey Court post judgment collection proceedings

Mr. DePetris has appeared before the Superior Court of New Jersey in the following counties:
• Atlantic County New Jersey Court
• Bergen County New Jersey Court
• Burlington County New Jersey Court
• Camden County New Jersey Court
• Cape May County New Jersey Court
• Cumberland County New Jersey Court
• Essex County New Jersey Court
• Gloucester County New Jersey Court
• Hudson County New Jersey Court
• Mercer County New Jersey Court
• Middlesex County New Jersey Court
• Monmouth County New Jersey Court
• Morris County New Jersey Court
• Ocean County New Jersey Court
• Passaic County New Jersey Court
• Salem County New Jersey Court
• Somerset County New Jersey Court
• Sussex County New Jersey Court
• Union County New Jersey Court
• Warren County New Jersey Court

IN WHAT NEW JERSEY COUNTIES WILL THE LAW OFFICE OF PAUL DEPETRIS HANDLE NEW JERSEY LAWSUITS?
The Law Office of Paul DePetris offers to handle and help individuals and businesses with New Jersey Court Claims lawsuits in North, Central and Southern New Jersey, including lawsuits in the following New Jersey counties:
• Atlantic County New Jersey Court
• Bergen County New Jersey Court
• Burlington County New Jersey Court
• Camden County New Jersey Court
• Cape May County New Jersey Court
• Cumberland County New Jersey Court
• Essex County New Jersey Court
• Gloucester County New Jersey Court
• Hudson County New Jersey Court
• Mercer County New Jersey Court
• Middlesex County New Jersey Court
• Monmouth County New Jersey Court
• Morris County New Jersey Court
• Ocean County New Jersey Court
• Passaic County New Jersey Court
• Salem County New Jersey Court
• Somerset County New Jersey Court
• Sussex County New Jersey Court
• Union County New Jersey Court
• Warren County New Jersey Court

WHAT IF I DON’T HAVE ENOUGH MONEY TO HIRE AN ATTORNEY TO HANDLE MY NEW JERSEY CASE FROM BEGINNING TO END?
In many situations, the Law Office of Paul DePetris offers alternatives to handling New Jersey lawsuits for an hourly fee, such as by offering to handle your New Jersey case up to trial for a fixed fee or to help you handle your New Jersey case by yourself. Such flexible methods may allow you to keep the amount legal fees you spend on your New Jersey case to a fixed sum, while providing you the help you need to handle your New Jersey case. For a no obligation phone consultation about what the Firm might be able to do for you, call Mr. DePetris at 609-714-2020 or send an email to Mr. DePetris.
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