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Florida Couple's Chinese Drywall Lawsuit Clears Legal Hurdles

Dec 24, 2009 | Parker Waichman LLP

A Florida couple could see their Chinese drywall lawsuit go to trial soon. According to The Miami Herald, all of the legal roadblocks facing Melissa and Jason Harrells' lawsuit were recently cleared.

The couple's Homestead home, built in 2006, was plagued with corrosion problems and odors typical of the type attributed to Chinese drywall.  The Harrells were forced out of their home after several family members experienced breathing problems.  They filed suit in March, against South Kendall Construction, Palm Holdings, Keys Gate Realty and Banner Supply.

Banner Supply had argued it had not been given enough time to make a repair offer to the Harrells and avoid litigation.  But according to The Miami Herald, the third District Court of Appeal ruled that Banner Supply had been given ample opportunity to do so.  Earlier, a judge had also ruled the Harrells could sue for damages beyond the cost of repairs, including the loss of value to their home, the cost of alternate housing and more extensive remediation to their house.

So far, the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) has received 2,360 reports from residents in 35 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico concerning Chinese drywall. At least 3,000 people across the country have filed lawsuits over defective Chinese drywall.The first bellwether trials in the litigation are slated to begin in January.


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