Over time, toxic mold exposure makes people extremely sick. Sometimes, it’s fatal. What exactly is toxic mold? If you’re made sick by toxic mold at your home or your place of work, can you be compensated? Can you take legal action against a landlord or an employer?
Keep reading, and you’ll learn the answers to these questions from an experienced Chicago personal injury attorney. In this short introduction to toxic mold and the rights of injured negligence victims in Illinois, you’ll additionally learn what steps you should take if you or someone you love gets sick because of toxic mold.
Mold usually appears on walls and other surfaces initially as clusters of small black dots with a “fuzzy” look. Mold breaks down organic matter such as dead trees and fallen leaves. Mold spores remain airborne until they land on a wall or another surface.
How much risk is posed by toxic mold? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that “exposure … can cause adverse health effects in susceptible persons regardless of the type of mold or the extent of the contamination.”
What are the signs of toxic mold exposure? Symptoms include dizziness, fatigue, nausea, skin irritation, and breathing difficulty. Exposure to toxic mold may eventually impair someone’s immune system, affect the brain, and lead to long-term or permanent disability.
Toxic mold emits mycotoxins – deadly toxic agents. Long-term mycotoxin exposure causes serious neurological problems and is sometimes fatal.
When spores alight on a wall or another surface, and the conditions – such as temperature and moisture – are conducive, mold spores quickly flourish into colonies. Water damage in almost any structure could conceivably cause mold to grow and thrive there.
When landlords, businesses, and other property owners neglect the maintenance of a property, accidents that cause injuries are almost inevitable. Bad wiring, broken railings, dilapidated stairs, and toxic mold arising from water damage are a serious safety and health threats.
If you detect toxic mold at your workplace, your health may already be imperiled. If there’s mold in your home, your family – even the pets – may be at risk. In either case, make it a priority to speak as soon as possible with an experienced Chicago personal injury attorney.
If you rent, you may be able to bring legal action against the landlord. If you bought a house with toxic mold, and the seller did not disclose the existence of mold, you may be able to file a claim against the seller.
If you’re made sick by toxic mold, determining who may have liability can be challenging. Defective building materials, substandard construction work, a defective structural design, or the negligence of the owner or a former owner could all be important factors in determining liability.
If you buy a house or some other property or structure in or near the Chicago area, speak directly with the seller – as well as with your realtor – regarding toxic mold. Make sure that a home inspector has checked thoroughly for toxic mold before you buy any home.
If you rent your home and you get sick from toxic mold, your landlord may have liability – if he or she was or should have been aware of the toxic mold and did nothing about removing it.
If your home is free of toxic mold, you could still encounter – and get sick because of – toxic mold where you work. Employers who are aware of toxic mold in the workplace and do nothing about it may be accountable if employees become sick.
If, however, the employer genuinely did not know about toxic mold at your place of work, liability may fall on a third party. However, when toxic mold sickness is job-related, the victim usually isn’t allowed to file a personal injury claim.
Injured workers instead may qualify for workers’ compensation payments, but they may not sue employers for personal injuries. Injury victims may pursue personal injury lawsuits arising from work-related injuries only in cases where a third party has responsibility for the injury.
If you’re made sick by toxic mold, you may be able to sue for the failure to disclose or for negligence. Under Illinois law, an injured victim of negligence may seek compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and all damages related to the sickness or injury.
Toxic mold cases are complicated. Multiple defendants may have liability, and precise medical knowledge will need to be understood. If you become sick because of toxic mold at your home or place of work in the Chicago area, contact an experienced personal injury attorney promptly.
If you’re sick because of toxic mold, an experienced Chicago personal injury attorney can discuss how personal injury law applies to your own case and what your best legal options are. It’s always wise in personal injury cases to heed your attorney’s recommendations.
If you’re sick or injured because someone else was negligent, your first meeting with an Illinois personal injury lawyer is free. If you pursue a personal injury claim arising from toxic mold sickness, your attorney may ask for help from a medical specialist and/or a construction expert.
The main challenge with a toxic mold claim is drawing a direct cause-and-effect line from the mold to the illness. The defendant will likely claim that you’re sick for a different reason. That’s why a medical expert’s testimony or statement can mean the success or failure in a toxic mold case.
Settlement figures vary in these cases. The severity of the injuries and a variety of other factors must be considered. Nevertheless, if you’ve suffered illness because of toxic mold, and if another person’s negligence is the reason why the law in Illinois entitles you to compensation.
As mentioned above, your first meeting with a personal injury lawyer is free. There’s no obligation. Should you pursue legal action, no fee is paid for your attorney’s services until you receive the compensation you seek.
If a healthcare professional diagnoses you with a toxic mold sickness, get proper and comprehensive medical treatment – and save your receipts. Discuss your case with a good personal injury lawyer as soon as you know that it’s toxic mold sickness.
Do not wait to speak with an injury attorney, particularly if you’re already suffering from toxic mold sickness. Exercise your rights, and take care of yourself and your health and future. Nothing is more important.