Fraud Lawsuits

Southern California Fraud Litigation Attorney

Unscrupulous individuals have always been willing to use deceptive tactics to improve their bottom line.  Bernard Madoff wasn’t the first or the last big time crook.   We have successfully represented individuals, businesses and government entities in cases arising out of investment schemes, art forgeries, and criminal conduct in state and federal court for 20 years.  In Los Angeles I have represented creditors against Ezri Namvar and his company, Namco and tried other notable fraud cases to jury verdict.

On July 7, 2011 Mr. Gentry won $438,000.00 in a fraud case stemming from a contract dispute. (Case  No.NC 054938 DNI-Allegre Foods, Inc. v. Allegre Foods, Inc.)

On October 6, 2010 Mr.  Gentry won a jury verdict of over $3,000,000 on behalf of the City of Compton.  Read about the case here.  Read the LA Times article about the case here.  The victory was one of the largest civil jury verdicts of the year.

Many entreprenuers inadvertently find themselves to be defendants in fraud actions brought by disgruntled investors.  Invariably these fraud lawsuits could have been avoided had the business entreprenuer consulted with a lawyer in preparing his investment offerings.  By being too cheap to pay for a proper contract, the entreprenuers face potentially disastrous fraud lawsuits that usually allege the entreprenuer mislead the other party as to the facts upon which the investor based his decision to invest. For more information on fraud lawsuits arising out of investment offerings read this blog post.

Fraud and deceit are defined in Civil Code Sections 1572, 1709 and 1710. Although courts and lawyers use the terms interchangeably, fraud technically applies only to contract actions. Section 1709 of the California Civil Code states that deceit is an act by someone “who willfully deceives another with intent to induce him to alter his position to his injury or risk.”

Section 1710 specifies four kinds of deceit:

  • Intentional misrepresentation of a fact
  • Negligent misrepresentation of a fact
  • Concealment or suppression of a fact
  • Promissory fraud

Damages in Fraud Cases

Most people know that fraud is one category of behavior that the court may find warrants punitive damages, but what else may be recovered?

Civil Code section 1709, in addition to defining fraud, makes it clear that a person who commits fraud is liable for all damages caused by the act.

The most common measure of the damages or the compensation the victim will receive in a fraud case is referred to as the out-of-pocket rule.

The out-of-pocket measure of damages looks specifically at what was lost as a result of a fraudulent act. It is intended to restore the victim to the financial position they held prior to the act. To do so, it awards the victim the difference between the actual value of what they gave and the actual value of what they received. The victim may also recover funds he reasonably spent in reliance on the misrepresentation if those amounts would not otherwise have been spent.

Worried about a lawsuit or dispute arising out of issues such as contract or fraud, broker fraud, art fraud, securities fraud? Call us for a free consultation. Beverly Hills Business Attorney Galen Gentry can help you protect your interests and effectively litigate disputes. With 25 years of experience and the highest rating for legal skills and ethical conduct from avvo.com and martindale.com, Galen can also work with you to avoid costly legal problems through proper planning and contract drafting. Call today for a free, no obligation consultation. Serving clients in Southern California including Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, Hollywood, The San Fernando Valley, Glendale, Pasadena, Ventura County, Orange County and Long Beach.

Or email us at galen@galengentry.com.