PHILADELPHIA–-April 12, 2010–On April 8, Judge Fallon of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, awarded seven Plaintiffs $2,609,129.99 for damage to their property, personal property, compensatory damages and the loss of their use and enjoyment of their homes, against Defendant Taishan in Germano, et al. v. Taishan Gypsum Co., Ltd., et al.
This holding found that Chinese drywall (CDW hereinafter) from Taishan was different than domestic drywall because it had significantly higher average concentrations of strontium & detectable levels of elemental sulfur. Court findings were consistent with reports from the CPSC and the Florida Health Dept. Further, the Court held, the gases released by CDW caused offending odors, making homes uninhabitable and corroded metals.
In all instances, “the level of corrosive sulfur gases emitted by Chinese drywall in the Plaintiffs’ homes exceed the safe level established by recognized standards, peer reviewed literature, and expert opinions and this corrosive environment has had a significant impact on the exposed property,” the Court said. The Court’s holding didn’t address the devaluation of the Plaintiffs’ homes caused by CDW.
The ruling requires the removal of all drywall from the Plaintiffs’ homes versus selective removal of only CDW. It also requires the removal of all wire, copper, HVAC units, carpets, hardwood floor, and electronic devices suffering damage from the CDW. In addition, the Court found that items that require removal for complete remediation, such as cabinets, counter tops, trim, insulation, etc. must be replaced. This holding is consistent with remediation recommendations of both the CPSC and the National Association of Home Builders. “The Court requires the Plaintiffs’ homes to be gutted, causing displacement as well. The costs and inconvenience is evident & this is just seven families of the thousands impacted by CDW,” Tom Hagy, CEO of HB Litigation Conferences (HBLC) said.
In addition to the recent MDL ruling, HBLC’s May 18th conference will address: Remediation; What Is Happening at the State Capitol; Coverage Cases & Choice of Law Issues; Proper Forums; Evolving Legal Issues; Bankruptcy and Ethical Releases. For more information about the “Chinese Drywall Litigation & Coverage Conference,” on May 18th in New Orleans, contact HBLC by phone at (484) 324-2755 x212, by email at info@LitigationConferences.com, or by visiting the conferences section at HB’s website at www.LitigationConferences.com.