Building managers, property owners, and others in charge of real estate have a duty to make sure their premises are safe. This includes taking care of health concerns such as toxic mold. Failure to handle these issues can result in significant health problems for anyone who enters the premises, and it could be grounds to file a mold lawsuit.
Toxic Mold and Health Issues
There are various types of mold that can be harmful to one’s health, the most common of which is known as the black mold. The more significant health concerns that may result from black mold exposure include the following:
- Allergic reactions
- Skin irritation
- Difficulty breathing/upper respiratory problems
- Constant headaches
- Hair loss
- Muscle cramps
- Sensitivity to light
These symptoms can be especially severe for those with allergies or asthma.
Determining Who Is Liable
If it can be determined that one’s health problems are related to mold exposure, there may be grounds for a lawsuit. Pinning down the exact cause—and therefore who’s at fault—can be difficult, however.
For instance, the presence of black mold in an office building may be the result of a structural defect that led to excess moisture within the building. In that case, the contractor could be held liable. On the other hand, if it turns out the building’s structure isn’t the issue, it could have resulted from the landlord’s failure to adequately maintain the property.
Parties who may be at fault include:
- Contractors, subcontractors, roofers, framers, etc.
- Structural engineers
- Materials manufacturers and suppliers
- Previous owners
A mold lawsuit could be made from several different angles with different theories of liability. It may be a matter of negligence (such as the instances with the contractor or landlord), or it may constitute a breach of warranty on the part of the builder. It may also be an instance where a seller failed to disclose the presence of mold on the property, making them liable for the issue.
Determining the Value of Your Case
When filing a mold lawsuit, the number of damages you are owed needs to be determined. In a premises liability claim, this will largely depend on the degree of medical treatment you need as a result of exposure. Your medical bills will be the most concrete measure of how much your case is worth.
Less tangible factors may also be included, such as pain and suffering, diminished quality of life, and (in rare cases) punitive damages. These are fairly subjective, and as such, the amount you recover for mold-related injuries will largely depend on the quality of your attorney.
Typically, these cases are handled outside of court as a settlement, but there may be cases where a trial hearing is necessary. In either case, your attorney should be able to go to court when it’s needed in order to make sure you recover the maximum amount possible. Hart David Carson LLP, for instance, has a great deal of experience helping clients recover for personal injury cases, including premises liability issues. To schedule a consultation, contact our attorneys today.