The clearly titled Virginia Real Estate, Land Use & Construction Law Blog has an interesting story about a lawsuit in Charlottesville.
A buyer of a residence suffered flooding caused by a clogged drain of a neighboring property. The buyer learned that the drain had clogged and caused flooding of the residence several times before the purchase. The purchase contract contained a home inspection contingency, but the inspection did not reveal the problem. The sellers and agent did not disclose the problem.
The buyer sued the agent for fraud and for not revealing the defects.
[T]he court dismissed the fraud and constructive fraud claims finding there was no showing of active concealment of the flooding as opposed to mere lack of disclosure. The court permitted a count based on "Breach of Statutory Duty to Disclose Material Adverse Facts" based on the code section.
Cautions the blog, "The Agents and sellers should beware of this case as it may provide a complete end run around the contract and traditional concepts of caveat emptor."