Mold Damage Lawyer in Hialeah
While Florida’s warm, subtropical climate makes it an ideal place to call home, the humid air also creates the optimal environment for mold infestations. Toxic mold exposure can be harmful to individuals occupying an infested home, apartment, or condominium in Hialeah, and can cause thousands in structural damage to a residence. Mold is often due to water intrusion in the home from events like rainstorms, flooding, or even a burst water pipe. The moisture that follows these scenarios frequently causes the growth of toxic mold and warrants the need for mold remediation.
If you have suffered property damage or have developed health problems because of a mold infestation in your residence, you may be eligible to receive compensation for your losses, including the cost to get rid of the mold. The mold damage lawyers at Schlacter Law have been helping Hialeah residents win mold damage settlements for years. Whether you are battling a landlord or property insurance company, we have the experience and skills to litigate personal injury and property damage mold claims. We fight for maximum compensation to ensure your property gets back to safe conditions as quickly as possible.
Mold in the Home
Mold is a fungus that is omnipresent in nature. Mold spores continually float through the air and can enter the home through open doorways, windows, vents, and heating and air conditioning systems. Mold in the air outside can also attach itself to clothing, shoes, and pets and be carried indoors.
Mold spreads through spores that float through the air before depositing on wet or damp surfaces. Indoors, these places include areas of excessive moisture such as where leakage may have occurred in roofs, pipes, and walls, areas of condensation, or where there has been recent flooding. Many common Hialeah home building materials provide suitable nutrients for mold growth including paper and paper products, cardboard, ceiling tiles, and wood and wood products. Mold can also grow on dust, paints, wallpaper, insulation materials, drywall, carpet fabric, and upholstery.
Signs of Mold Damage
The most obvious sign of mold damage is visible mold growth. Some molds might appear white and thread-like. Others appear in clusters of small, pepper-like black or green spots. Mold in Hialeah homes can be a variety of colors, but the most common colonies found in homes will usually be gray-brown, black, gray-green, or white.
Mold colonies are also associated with a distinct odor. While not all molds produce a smell, many do. If you smell a persistent musty odor, there might be mold hidden somewhere in your home.
Aside from the actual site or smell of mold, there are certain tell-tale signs that indicate mold may be growing hidden behind your walls, ceilings, or beneath your flooring. Cracked or peeling paint, any discoloration or wet marks, wood warping, and bulging or bubbling wallpaper are obvious indications of moisture. In the presence of moisture or water, mold will begin to grow in Hialeah buildings in as little as twenty-four to forty-eight hours. If you notice any of these signs of moisture, a closer look might also reveal the beginnings of small amounts of mold growth. Additionally, seeing small spots of mold on a wall can sometimes indicate that there is actually a larger mold colony on the other side of the wall which is slowly growing through. Mold that grows behind vinyl and wallpaper might be orange, pink, or purple in color. It is important to remember that mold is more than just an unsightly nuisance in the home. Mold will feed on and break down organic matter, causing structural damage and threatening the integrity of your home.
Finally, an allergic reaction or allergy-related symptoms can indicate there could be mold growth hidden in the home. If you are not sure whether your symptoms are caused by mold in your home, consider whether your symptoms improve once you go outside or leave the home. If they do improve, there is a good chance mold is causing your symptoms.
Symptoms of Mold Exposure
Mold exposure can cause many health effects. Symptoms of mold allergies include:
- Sore, itchy throat
- Congestion and runny nose
- Sinus headaches
- Burning, watery eyes
- Irritated, itchy skin
People with asthma or who are allergic to mold may have more severe reactions including upper respiratory tract symptoms, chronic coughing, and wheezing. Individuals with chronic respiratory diseases including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease may experience difficulty breathing. People with immune suppression or underlying lung diseases are at an increased risk for fungal infections from molds.
Certain molds in Hialeah homes are toxigenic, meaning they can produce toxins–called mycotoxins–that can harm humans. The most infamous of the toxic molds that can be found growing in homes is Stachybotrys atra, also referred to as “black mold.” Some research suggests that the mycotoxins released from black mold may have a link to serious health problems including:
- Nose bleeds
- Aches and pains
- Changes in mood
- Memory loss 
It is important to note that all molds–not just black molds–are capable of producing mycotoxins but the presence of mold does not necessarily mean that it is producing these toxins.
Another such health concern of black or toxic mold exposure is mycotoxicosis or mold poisoning. However, most cases of mycotoxicosis result from eating moldy food, rather than from inhaling fungal spores. There is no definitive evidence to indicate that inhaling or touching mold can cause mycotoxicosis. However, all molds in the home should be promptly removed.
Addressing Mold Damage in Hialeah
Mold can cause serious illness and property damage. If you find mold in your home, apartment building, or condominium, it is important to address the issue immediately with the appropriate authority or entity.
If you rent or lease your residence in Hialeah, contact your landlord or building manager as soon as you suspect mold. While Florida law requires landlords to provide a safe and habitable living environment for tenants, there are no laws that specifically address the landlord’s responsibilities regarding mold prevention and remediation. However, if the mold was a result of the landlord’s negligence or lack of maintenance, the landlord will be legally responsible for removing the mold once they are made aware of the problem. If a tenant gets sick because of exposure to mold, the landlord could also be responsible for damages in addition to remediation costs. If you were made sick because of toxic mold in your building, contact a toxic mold attorney for more information on how to proceed.
For Hialeah homeowners, you may be able to file a claim for mold damage through your homeowner’s insurance policy. Depending on your policy, your insurance may cover mold damage if it was caused by a “covered peril.” As mold growth is associated with water or excess moisture, common water-related covered perils include:
- Accidental discharge or overflow of water from burst pipes or faulty plumbing
- Falling objects
- Damage caused by vehicles
- Frozen pipes
It is important to note that the cause of the mold damage must be sudden or accidental and not the result of poor home maintenance or neglect. For example, homeowners insurance may cover mold damage resulting from a washing machine hose suddenly breaking and releasing water. On the other hand, if mold damage results after you fail to repair a long-term leaky toilet, homeowners insurance would likely not pay for repairs.
When filing a claim for mold damage with your insurance company, it is best to consult a local mold damage lawyer. Insurance companies are notorious for denying or undervaluing mold damage claims, and you may have trouble being fully compensated for mold removal and remediation. The team at Schlacter Law has years of experience helping the residents of Hialeah with mold damage claims. We take the time to sift through policy jargon to find coverage for your mold damage. We employ industry experts in mold detection and remediation to build a case for full claim coverage, ensuring you will get the maximum settlement possible for your mold damages. The mold damage team at Schlacter Law has the expertise and drive to make sure your case is handled quickly and completely.
How We Handle Cases
- You will remain in constant contact with Schlacter Law about the progression of your case.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you keep mold out of homes and buildings?
Mold thrives in warm, wet conditions. The first step in controlling mold is to control moisture and humidity levels within the home. Keep humidity levels as low as you can–between 30% and 50%–using air conditioners and dehumidifiers. Proper ventilation in high-moisture areas such as bathrooms, kitchens, basements, and laundry areas can help protect other areas of the home from becoming too moist.
It is also important to periodically inspect Hialeah buildings for evidence of water damage and visible mold as part of routine maintenance. Promptly fix leaky roofs, windows, and plumbing, and clean and dry affected areas. By limiting moisture in the buildings, you will limit your chance of mold growth.
What possible damages can I recover in a mold suit?
Damages in a toxic mold suit can vary but generally compensate for the physical damages to your home, health, and mental anguish suffered.
Whether you are trying to recover damages through your personal insurance company or through a Hialeah landlord or property owner, a plaintiff who proves that they were exposed to toxic mold due to the negligence of another person or company is entitled to compensation. With the help of a toxic mold attorney, you may be entitled to recover damages for the following:
- Toxic mold removal and remediation
- Replacements costs of personal belongings
- Medical care and expenses if a resident was made sick due to the mold exposure
- Pain and suffering related to toxic mold exposure
How can I treat a mold allergy?
If you are allergic to mold, treatment generally entails staying away from the allergen as much as possible and using over the counter medicines to treat symptoms.
A doctor may diagnose a mold allergy through a number of means including:
- Evaluating a person’s symptoms and their medical history
- Using a skin prick test
- Testing a blood sample to measure the immune system’s response to mold
According to Medical News Today, treatment for a mold allergy is similar to treatment for other types of respiratory allergies.  Treatment options for symptoms include:
- Removing all mold from the home and avoiding the allergen whenever possible
- Using a nasal rinse to flush mold spores out of the nose
- Taking antihistamines to stop runny nose, sneezing, and itchiness
- Using nasal decongestant sprays or nasal corticosteroids to reduce inflammation for temporary congestion relief
Long-term solutions include immunotherapy, which can be highly effective for certain types of mold allergies. Talk to your local Hialeah doctor for more information on all mold allergy treatment options.