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A “fraud” claim in Texas is an action to recover damages associated with a wrongful representation to you, which you relied on to your detriment. Here is a brief discussion of the most frequently asked questions I receive relating to a lawsuit to recover for fraud.

What do I have to prove to win a Fraud Claim?

To recover for fraud, you’ll need to prove the following:

  1. The defendant made a representation to you;
  2. The representation was material;
  3. The representation was false;
  4. When the defendant made the representation, the defendant either: (a) knew the representation was false, or (b) made the representation recklessly without verifying its truth;
  5. The defendant made the representation with the intent you act on it;
  6. You relied on the representation; and
  7. The representation caused you injury.

If you can prove these elements, you will usually be entitled to recover damages for your Fraud Claim, and you should consult an experienced attorney immediately to get your case on file.

It is also worth noting that there are other types of fraud, such as fraud committed by not disclosing a material fact and statutory fraud. You should consult with an experienced attorney to see which, if any, of these types of claims apply to your case.

What type of damages can I recover for a Fraud Claim?

In a Fraud Claim, you can recover your “actual” or “economic” damages. These damages usually consist of your out-of-pocket costs relating to the fraud. You can also recover “benefit of the bargain” damages in certain cases, which will focus on getting you paid back for the value you negotiated compared to the value you received. You can also recover damages for mental anguish. If you want to recover mental anguish damages, it is always helpful to have this anguish diagnosed and/or treated by a physician. Finally, you can recover exemplary damages, which are aimed at punishing the opposing party from committing fraud.

Am I entitled to recover attorneys’ fees for my Fraud Claim?

The short answer is: No, you are usually not entitled to recover your attorneys’ fees in a Fraud case. However, there may be other causes of action to file with your Fraud Claim, which may entitle you to recover your attorneys’ fees. For example, if you also have a breach of contract claim, you may be entitled to recover attorneys’ fees associated with your lawsuit under this theory of recovery.

How long is the statute of limitations in a Fraud Case?

The statute of limitations in a fraud case is four years, which means you should always try to bring your fraud claim within four years from the date the fraud occurred. There are some instances where this time period may be extended, but you never want to bank on one of these exceptions applying to you. I always advise clients to get your claim on file as early as possible and before any arguable expiration of the limitations period.

Brad Laney. Brad is a business litigation attorney in Houston with substantial experience in fraud lawsuits. If you need help with your case, please do not hesitate to contact Brad for your free consultation: Blaney@raleybowick.com or 713-429-8056. Brad is happy to talk with you directly about your case, and your discussion will be kept confidential.