What Is Fraud? 

Generally speaking, fraud refers to dishonest acts that intentionally use deception to result in financial or personal gain. 

Types of Fraud

Fraud is typically either Actual Fraud or Constructive Fraud. Actual Fraud consists of fraudulent misrepresentation and concealment. 

  • Fraudulent misrepresentation is when someone lies about a characteristic, which leads to deprivation of another person or entity of money, equity, property, or legal rights. 

Elements for Fraudulent Misrepresentation

  • A false statement concerning a material fact,
  • The representors know that the representation is false,
  • They intended that the representation would induce another to act on it, 
  • A consequent injury by the party acting in reliance on the representation.
  • Concealment is the withholding or suppression of facts. The most notable example is insurance fraud: when someone catches their property on fire on purpose to collect the insurance money and withholds the information that they started the fire.

Constructive Fraud is different from “actual fraud” in that the conduct causing damage is not, by itself, actionable. However, if there is a special confidential or fiduciary relationship between the parties that allows one party to take advantage of the other, then that is constructive fraud. 

What Can I Recover From Being a Victim of Fraud?

Depending on the availability, you can recover remedies such as:

  • Compensatory damages (compensating you for your loss),
  • Equitable remedies,
  • Punitive damages (money awarded to you based upon punishing the wrongdoer), and
  • Attorney’s fees.

How Much Time Do You Have to File a Claim For Fraud?

Typically, the fraud statute of limitations is four years. However, the statute of limitations does not start to run until the plaintiff knew or reasonably should have known of the facts constituting fraud. 

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