Liability, Insurance And Other Economic Issues:
The presence of mold contamination has serious economic consequences. Many insurance carriers refuse to issue insurance to people who have made a water loss claim within the past three years. Some insurance carriers charge an additional premium to issue insurance to cover a property that has suffered a prior water loss, or to provide so called mold coverage. Insurance companies like the Insurance Partnership maintain a data base of information concerning prior water damage claims submitted to other insurance carriers which can be searched by claimant and property.
Mold can seriously damage a building structure. Failure to properly take care of a water loss resulting in mold and water damaged structural elements can significantly compromise the integrity of a building and impair the fire retardant quality of walls.
Final Word /Take Home Message:
A property with a mold problem will be very difficult to sell. Newly enacted specific written disclosure requirements for mold-impacted properties, and the insurance industry’s reaction to water damage and mold claims, mean that property owners will have to deal with a mold problem before, during and after a real estate transaction.
It is conservatively estimated that there are over 10,000 pending lawsuits concerning mold contamination. I have written a booklet, entitled Mold Litigation Manual, which discusses how to prosecute, how to defend, how to settle, and how to avoid such lawsuits. I use this Manual to provide more cost effective services to my clientele who do not bear the entire expense of the research necessary to prepare these materials. If you decide to fix the mold problem, be forewarned that mold remediation projects can take weeks, months or even years to complete, during which the premises remain uninhabitable. Everything you can imagine going wrong, can go wrong. I have written a booklet, entitled Mold Fiascoes, of which contains case studies, anecdotes and commentaries illustrating some of the many problems people encounter in mold remediation without expert experienced and competent counsel. A copy of this booklet is available upon request.
This article has highlighted some of the significant and difficult problems and conundrums that can come up when there is mold remediation. There are others. You need to have an experienced and competent Mold Assessment Team, and competent mold remediation contractor, in place to service your specific needs. If someone believes they have a mold related health problem, I will be happy to provide references to scientific articles that would have accompanied this article had this article been written for physicians.