Mold is an exposure that has been a game-changer for many insurance providers, and one that has changed the way insureds educate and protect their investments and reputation. Although concerns about mold are not new, the way businesses are working to prevent it and handle the risk have certainly shifted. Here are some mold insurance claims:
- A mechanical contractor installed a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system in a new commercial office building. After three years, mold and mildew growth caused the release of airborne bacteria throughout the entire building, resulting in poor indoor air quality. Claims against the contractor for bodily injury and loss of property use exceeded $500,000. In addition, the contractor was responsible for decontaminating the HVAC system.
- Two tenants of an apartment complex alleged toxic mold and fungi caused their asthma, bronchitis, cognitive deficits and impaired function of their immune systems. A Delaware jury awarded over $1 million in damages; however the award was reduced to $818, 390 after issues of comparative negligence were taken into account.
- An Indianapolis couple filed a lawsuit alleging that there water damage restoration contractor did a poor job removing moisture from their 4,600-square-foot home, causing mold to grow throughout the house. Initial attempts to clear the mold have already cost $43,000, and current estimates predict cost of removal to be $100,000.
- A California condominium association is suing the developers, contractors, and property manager for construction defects that they allege were responsible for toxic mold that caused personal injuries and property damage.
- A woman claims her home sustained flood damage because of the negligent construction and maintenance of a city storm water detention facility. Further, she claimed that the city did not properly remediate the flood damage, resulting in mold growth that eventually caused her and her family to abandon the home.
- About 100 workers employed at a county courthouse filed suit alleging that exposure to toxic molds in the courthouse caused a variety of adverse health effects. Injuries alleged include respiratory ailments, skin rashes, headaches, nausea, vertigo and memory loss. The suit, which alleges that various contractors negligently developed, designed, planned, and built the courthouse, also maintains that the county failed to properly maintain the building.
- A Washington school teacher filed suit against the general contractor, construction manager, and architect of their School alleging exposure to toxic mold in her classroom and other places in the school caused her personal injuries. The plaintiff alleges certain construction defects in that the school’s windows walls and roof do not repel and shed moisture as they should.
- In California a group received $1.3 million for toxic mold insurance claims against the builders and contractors whose shoddy workmanship allowed leaks to cause mold to invade their homes.
- Two former tenants in a Seattle apartment building filed a suit against the building owner for substandard construction and maintenance resulting in toxic mold that caused chronic illnesses. The plaintiffs are also suing for property damage due to the mold.
- Teachers and students filed a suit against their High School District, various contractors, and the architect of the school. The suit alleges construction defects, faulty design of the ventilation system and faulty design of the windows let to toxic mold in the building and resulting to adverse health effects.
- Mechanical Contractors – Fungus Infects Patients- A mechanical contractor removed ductwork from a hospital’s HVAC system. It was later determined that the ductwork was home to a dangerous fungus. The dismantling activities and the on-site storage of dismantled ductwork caused the fungus to spread into the hospital. Patients became infected with the fungus; some were even critically infected. The contractor was found liable for the spread of the fungus and faced bodily injury and property damage claims in excess of $1 million.
- A couple claims a loss of business and bodily injury due to growth of toxic molds in a rental space leased from the defendants interior design business. The husband and wife claimed economic damages in excess of $1.8 million and general non-economic damages of an additional $3 million.
- Erin Brockovich filed a personal injury/construction defect complaint against the former owner and the builder, alleging that each had a role in causing water intrusion that led to growth of mold. Brockovich alleges that she and members of her family have suffered adverse health effects from exposure to the mold.
- An Ohio hotel manager sued the hotel owners, alleging that he experienced adverse health effects subsequent to participating in remediation of toxic mold in the hotel.
- Several Maryland office workers filed a lawsuit seeking three million dollars for personal injuries arising out of exposure to toxic mold. The suit alleges that mold and fungi “were allowed to flourish” within the building’s 30 years old heating, ventilation and air conditioning system. Defendants are the current and former building owners, the current and former property managers and the on-site building supervisor.
- In In Delaware, two women were awarded $1.04 million after their landlord failed to fix leaks and mold problems in their apartment. Both women claimed the landlord’s negligence resulted in serious health problems in asthma attacks.
- In Texas a homeowner received $1.5 million in a bad-faith lawsuit against his insurance company, after the company refused to pay his claim for mold damage to his home.
For more information on Mold coverage or to discuss a specific account, please contact us.
While the coverages we offer are designed to address these general issues, we make no guarantee or warranty that any individual policy we offer will respond to all issues as described herein. Please refer to the actual policy wording in each offered form to determine coverage applicability and acceptability. In the event your client applies for coverage and we offer terms, please review those terms carefully to determine if all of your client’s exposures are being addressed. In some instances, more than one policy or type of coverage may be necessary.