Starting in 2001, several home builders began using drywall imported from China for the building of homes and other residential structures. This was due to a shortage of drywall manufactured locally in the U.S. However, a great deal of the imported drywall was found to be contaminated and resulted in eventual damage to the homes over time.
The imported drywall, or “Chinese Drywall”, was defective because it emits sulfuric gases such as carbonyl sulfide and carbon disulfide. The emissions result in severe property damage for home owners, the most common being the erosion of copper pipes. Also, several health concerns have been reported in connection with Chinese drywall, including asthma and other respiratory problems.
You should check for damage due to Chinese drywall if you notice the following occurring in your home:
You might also suspect Chinese drywall damage if you or your loved ones experience the following physical symptoms:
Beginning in September of 2010 the government has allowed persons to claim damage from Chinese drywall as a casualty loss, deductible on federal tax returns. In order to claim the deduction, you must meet the following requirements:
Recently it has been very difficult to obtain legal damage for Chinese drywall issues. Several courts have repeatedly struck down claims due to such overlapping factors as latent defects and environmental concerns. Also, it has been very difficult to obtain reimbursement through an insurance company.
However, the laws governing toxic torts vary widely from state to state. For example, class action Chinese drywall suits have been successful in Alabama, Florida, Louisiana and Mississippi. Some victims have received up to $100,000 in damages. Check with a lawyer to see if you may participate in or initiate a toxic exposure class action lawsuit.
If the damage to your home is very severe and clearly caused by defective Chinese drywall, you should consult a personal injury lawyer to review your situation. They will be able to give you advice as to whether you might succeed in a court of law. Also, if you need help preparing your federal tax deduction for casualty losses, a lawyer can assist you with the necessary documents.
Last Modified: 05-21-2018 06:20 PM PDTLaw Library Disclaimer
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