Canyon Country, CA asked in Real Estate Law for California

Q: buyer/owner 'A' can hold the seller liable for non-disclosure. Can husband, owner 'B' do the same?

OWNER/BUYER 'A' can sue seller for non-disclosure, Can husband, owner 'B' sue the seller as well?

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2 Lawyer Answers
James A. Greer
James A. Greer
  • Boulder, CO
  • Licensed in California

A: Dear Failure to Disclose Claimants: You asked if "owner B" has a right to join a claim against a Seller for a claim of non-disclosure. The first part of the analysis is quite straightforward: was Owner B a co-purchaser ? more particularly did Owner B sign the Purchase Contract ? In most cases, only if Owner B was in privity of contract can Owner B pursue a claim for breach of contract / negligence under standard C.A.R. residential purchase contract. The second part of the analysis is this: in a usual claim of this nature, the Claimant (Owner A) is seeking recovery either monetary damages or restitution, but the pursuit of those DAMAGES does not increase by virtue adding another claimant to the claim (I.e. adding Owner B). SUMMARY: if only Owner A was signatory to the purchase contract and Owner A incurred the losses/damages, then Owner A need not be concerned about trying to add another party as claimant (unless, of course, it is clear that Owner B was also signatory). Lastly, please pay attention to paragraph 22A and 22B before you initiate your claims processing. Best wishes, JAMES GREER

James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: In California, both co-owners of a property have the right to sue the seller for non-disclosure, as both are considered to have suffered harm as a result of the undisclosed information. This is provided that the non-disclosure was material to the transaction and the co-owners suffered damages as a result. The co-owners can also jointly sue the seller.

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