Find a Mold Attorney Near You
Mold creates dangerous problems for both your home and health. It can show up almost anywhere there is moisture, making it challenging to discover. Often when it is discovered it is too late to prevent the damage. In fact, the damage could be so serious you might require medical help and legal representation.
A mold attorney is trained to represent you in cases where mold has caused serious adverse health reactions in you or your family. These specialized attorneys help people receive the compensation deserved for having suffered such a serious and sometimes fatal mold-related illness. Read on to learn about the different types of dangerous mold, where they grow and how to find a mold attorney near you.
Types of Harmful Mold
There are over 100,000 species of mold in existence. Not all of them are dangerous (although any mold you find in your home should be removed). There are general categories of dangerous molds each causing increased amounts of medical threats. Allergenic molds cause allergic reactions, asthma and symptoms similar to the common cold. There are pathogenic molds, which cause chronic pulmonary infections and the weakening of the immune system. There are toxigenic molds (often referred to incorrectly as “toxic mold”), which develop mycotoxins and lead to serious illness and even death.
The most dangerous molds, which are toxic, have their own list of five categories. The most harmful mold is Stachybotrys chartarum, which can cause issues as serious as brain damage and death.
Penicillium, Fusarium and Cladosporium are all associated with issues as minor as nail fungus to those more serious such as kidney infection and emphysema. The least harmful of the toxic mold categories is Aspergillus, which contains more than 160 species but only 16 of which are dangerous to humans).
Where Does Mold Grow?
Mold of all categories grows where it is dark and moisture is present. There are obvious places such as around the bathtub, washing machine of kitchen sink. Floods, leaks and spills also create the right environment in which dangerous mold can grow. Mold can grow, and continue to grow, inside walls, in air ducts and under carpets until it is too late to prevent any damage or illness. While some scenarios leading to dangerous indoor mold – such as floods - are acts of nature, others may involve legally pursuable negligence.
How to Know if You Have a Mold Case
Having a viable mold case depends on numerous factors. You need to know the cause, location and type of the mold. You also must prove it became airborne or at least had the ability to become airborne. Keeping detailed, accurate records of the mold infestation is also crucial to having a viable case. While a mold attorney specializes in these situations, they cannot manifest details you do not provide.
Important details include when and where the mold growth began. They also include any attempts to remove the mold, which company was hired to remove it and what was the result. Most importantly, you must keep detailed records of any communication between you and your landlord in order to prove any potential negligence.
Types of Landlord Notice
In legal terms, there are two types of notice a landlord can receive regarding mold on the property. Constructive notice is based on reasonable assumptions (but not proof) that a party was informed of a situation. This is because knowledge of the mold is in their personal interest. Actual notice is when the landlord is told directly, regardless of the informant, that mold exists on the property. This actual notice sets the clock and requires the landlord to take appropriate action or potentially be charged with negligence.
Types of Damage Claims You Can Pursue
Three types of claims for damage can be made in a legal mold case. Property damage is a viable claim if property you own is damaged or destroyed by mold. Stigma damage is considered part of a property damage claim and includes the costs involved in mold testing and reduction of property value.
Personal injury is a claim you can pursue when you or your family are medically affected by mold. Damage claims vary based on the severity of the illness. Bronchitis might yield less compensation than will kidney disease or respiratory failure. You need to make sure you have seen a proper medical specialist to accurately diagnose your symptoms, detail their severity and put in writing that mold was the cause.
Emotional distress may seem vague but is a damage claim you can make in a viable mold case. Having been rendered seriously ill due to mold can cause emotional damage and a lingering concern for a relapse. If your landlord was given proper notice about mold existing on the property and did nothing about it, there is the possibility of claiming emotion distress.
How to Find a Mold Attorney Near You
Mold litigation is a specialized aspect of the attorney profession. There are online directories and websites specifically designed to help you find a quality mold attorney near you. Using them as resources is a great way to not only find mold attorneys, but also compare their experience levels, amount of cases won, prices and terms.
- FindLaw allows multiple levels of search options. You can search via a wide selection of cities, counties, metros and states. FindLaw also provides some guidance regarding what you should look for, such as pricing, experience, comfort level and a convenient location.
- LawInfo provides mold attorney search options in popular U.S. cities, all fifty states and the District of Columbia. Scroll to the bottom and more search options are available by attorney name, practice is and general location. Free information about how mold attorneys operate and how to determine if you have a mold-based illness are provided right on their site.
- Morgan and Morgan serves clients in fourteen states occupying fifty offices nationwide. They offer 24/7 availability and only charge a fee if you win the case. They boast over thirty years of experience and can outsource your case to an affiliate firm if not in your state.
- Attorneys.com allows you to focus a search on a specialized mold litigation attorney. They provide free information on how to proceed with mold litigation, symptoms of mold-based illnesses and how to prepare your information for a mold attorney. Use a dropdown menu to pinpoint your legal issue, enter your zip code and begin your search.
- LegalMatch is another site helping you search for a mold attorney near you. This site provides the most amount of free information of any site listed herein, including explanations of toxic mold, evidence needed to file a claim, who is eligible to file claims and what damages you can expect to recover if you win your case.