It’s incredibly important for you to know your rights when it comes to toxic mold exposure and to learn how best to build your case to increase your chances of success in court.
The first thing you need to know is that only certain lawyers will be qualified to deal with a toxic mold case and it’s a growing field in the industry. It requires a lot of time and resources and if this is an avenue you would like to go down you should expect it to take a while. In fact, litigation can extend for up to and over two years; it is incredibly difficult to prove injuries or ill health as a result of toxic mold.
You’ll want to find an attorney that specializes in this practice – they will be able to talk you through your state laws and what your chances of winning are.
There are numerous considerations for your attorney to make when you present your case and they prepare for a trial. The first is, what caused the mold infestation. Where did the infestation begin and how far did it spread? What species of mold created the problem and was it airborne? If it isn’t airborne, will it become airborne? We don’t generally consider mold to be a harmful issue unless it’s airborne. So, whether the mold is airborne or not is a crucial part of any case. The species of mold is also critical because there are so many different types.
You can’t expect a lawyer to win your case if you don’t provide them with adequate information. You should ensure that you keep detailed records. That means making a note of every leak that occurs, when you notified your landlord, when someone was sent to deal with leaks, the name of any company that has answered service calls, each and every communication between you and your landlord, as well as the results of any mold testing that was given, that should include the company as well as the date.
There are a variety of factors that can leave your landlord liable for your mold problem, and of course, their liability is key in establishing and winning your case. The first is providing them with notice of the issue. This can be actual or constructive.
Actual knowledge is when you (the tenant), a service person or an investigation of their own has shown them that mold is present on the properly. This means the landlord is now liable if they do not alert any future tenants that mold is present on the property. Constructive notice is simply a variety of facts that mean any reasonable person would have the necessary knowledge to indicate there is mold present on the property.
Damage Claims & Costs
Your attempt to claim for damages depends on a variety of factors. This could be personal injury, property damage, as well as emotional distress.
Personal injury could be the health issues toxic mold has caused, including asthma, bronchitis, memory issues, kidney problems, and more. Property damage relates to any loss of your property, and remediation costs.
Emotional distress is difficult to quantify, however, being exposed to toxic mold can leave you fearful about further medical issues as a result of this. This is something tenants can claim if the landlord knew there was mold present and didn’t disclose it or act.
The costs you will incur for hiring an attorney will, of course, depend on who you hire. Many lawyers will only charge you if your case is successful. However, it’s incredibly important to fully discuss that before you enter an agreement with your attorney of choice. You may find some attorneys will charge a fee just to review the file, that isn’t ideal so be sure you do plenty of research on any potential attorney.