Homeowners With Chinese Drywall Reach Settlement

Dec 16, 2011

Thousands of homeowners in southern states will be reviewing a proposed settlement with the major manufacturer involved in defective Chinese drywall litigation. The deal would pay for repairs and possibly medical expenses if the product made people sick.

The deal involves 4,500 property owners and Knauf Plasterboard. The company will pay for repairs and medical losses. Drywall imported from China from 2004 to 2007 eased demand from the housing boom and hurricane repairs.

But not long after residents started seeing corroded electrical wiring and detected a rotten egg odor. Some people had headaches and nosebleeds. They sued homebuilders who then sued manufacturers. Those claims, most in Florida and Louisiana, ended up in a federal court in New Orleans.

The plaintiffs' lead attorney Arnold Levin says this case won't be the last. He intends to go after other foreign drywall manufacturers.

"We intend to obtain judgments and execute on their property in the United States, because we're going to prove to the world that our system of jurisprudence works."

The federal judge must sign off on the deal before any money is handed out and that's not expected until next year.