It would a nice thing to believe that all businesses operated with integrity and good values, but that is not always the case. Businesses are regulated to prevent them from misrepresenting their products and services to the consumer. When this occurs, it not only harms the consumer, it also comprises the marketplace.
Misrepresentation is a form of consumer fraud. These activities can arise in countless type of consumer transactions such as false advertising, counterfeit goods, or claims regarding goods and services.
Misrepresentation often occurs when:
- A seller makes a statement regarding a good or service;
- The seller knowingly made a false statement or behaved in reckless manner;
- The seller intended for the consumer to rely on the statement;
- The buyer acted on the statement; and
- The buyer suffers harm as a result.
A misrepresentation can be a criminal or civil wrong. A guilty party can face serious legal consequences if the wrongdoing is characterized as fraud. This can occur in a variety of business scenarios through the creation of a contract.
A contract is only valid when all parties are aware of the terms and agree to them. Fraudulent misrepresentation occurs when a party makes a purposeful misrepresentation to persuade a buyer to purchase a product or service.
There are two types of misrepresentation, the first is where a party makes an affirmative statement that is false. The other type is when the party tells a half-truth-part of the statement is true but the party omits a material fact.
These actions can be pursued in civil court. One remedy is rescission, where the transaction is cancelled, and the parties are returned to their original position. If the misrepresentation was fraudulent, meaning there was specific intent, damages can be awarded.
If you believe you have been a victim of misrepresentation, it is important to take prompt action. These cases have filing deadlines that must be followed. Failure to file in time will bar you from pursuing a claim.
Do I Need a Lawyer?
These are serious matters that can be challenging to prove. Proving that someone intentionally mislead you can be difficult. It can be your word against the other party’s. Because of this it is important to have an experienced lawyer defending your rights and ensuring that the guilty party is held accountable for their actions.
These practices are damaging to not only you as an individual, but also thousands of other consumers. If you believe your consumer rights have been violated, come in and speak to the experienced lawyers at the Paynter Law for guidance and a free consultation. We will listen to the facts of your case and give you a fair assessment of your legal rights. Call us today at (202) 626-4486.