Wednesday, August 3, 2016
Disclosure in Real Estate in Arizona and California
In 2002, we brought a house in California from a crook which, despite being advertised as brand new, transpired it had been almost completely destroyed by a fire and covered up rather than rebuilt.
When the roof stated leaking we had to put on a new roof. When the roof was removed it was riddled with fire. See the video of the roof removal by clicking HERE
After we had dismissed a defamation lawsuit for complaining to the Contractors Licensing Board by the crook via an anti-SLAPP motion, we moved to the real action being a three-year fraud case – the key issue being disclosure.
We had as expert witness, without charge, an amazing realtor in Skip Outman. He taught disclosure to realtors on a state level but sadly has since passed on. Click HERE
On the stand in front of the jury, a fascinating debate on disclosure ensued with the defense attorneys arguing that the crook had met the minimum disclosure standard required by law. Skip, obviously with great thought, educated the jury that California was a state where real estate transactions, at least for residential real estate, was conducted by realtors – not attorneys.
Therefore, realtor’s standards applied – not the lower ones typically embodied in legal minimums.
When pressed further, Skip was rudely asked what standard of disclosure he would use. After a pause he said – "if it crosses your mind whether you should disclose it – you should disclose it".
The resulting $1.3million judgment is attached HERE which set another first for “long-dated rescission”. Realtors please take note because this disclosure standard covers, not just the house, but HOA matters as well. Especially those realtors in the “Hall of Shame” who want to close their eyes to this. Because Arizona emulates California in many areas.