Home Owners Win Victory

Home owners in Grand Prairie, Arlington, Mansfield, Colleyville, Keller, Aledo, Bedford, and all through the State of Texas should be comforted about a recent case. This case was in Florida, but will help home owners all over the United States, including Texas.
On June 19, 2010, The Miami Herald reported on a story concerning a lawsuit over the Chinese drywall that has been in the news the last few years. The author of the story is Nirvi Shah. The reporter tells us that after two and a half years, a Miami couple was awarded $2.5 million in damages and expenses, after blaming odors and corrosion problems on defective Chinese drywall.
The article, the title of which is, “Chinese drywall verdict is in: $2.5 million,” tells us that Armin and Lisa Seifart sued Miami-based Banner Supply after the drywall that the company provided corroded copper pipes and fixtures, ruined their air conditioner and other appliances and made their home stink.
This case was the first jury trial in the United States, over Chinese drywall. It could set a precedent for other lawsuits. Plus, Banner has dozens of cases pending over this same issue.
An interesting note in this case is that it was discovered that a 2007 agreement between Banner and Knauf Plasterboard Tianjin existed, wherein they were allowed to replace the Chinese drywall with a domestic product. It turned out that Banner only replaced Chinese drywall it had supplied to select builders and installers who had complained about a smell. In this light, it is important to realize that Banner knew of problems and could have prevented other homes from being affected by the drywall had they gone public with the complaints years ago.
In this case, Banner conceded that the drywall was defective, but the company wanted only to pay for actual expenses — not for negligence or any stigma the home will carry.
It is important to realize that the Seifarts did not move into their home until more than a year after the confidential agreement mentioned above had been signed. In other words, they could have been warned about these problems. They ended up moving out less than a year later.
Also assigned blame in this case was the importer La Suprema and China based exporter, Rothchilt International.
Prior to this case, a federal Judge in Louisiana awarded $2.6 million to seven Virginia homeowners, finding drywall manufacturer Taishan Gypsum Company liable for damage.
Repairs on the Seifart home, which was essentially gutted and rebuilt, will not be complete until atleast January.