What is toxic mold?
Mold is something that naturally occurs in the environment, and we have probably all come across mold in one form or another. Many molds are perfectly harmless, but you can get dangerous molds that contain a toxic substance that can prove harmful or deadly to living creatures. These are referred to as toxic molds. The presence of toxic molds indoors has increased over the years, and this is partly due to the way that many buildings are structured these days. Airtight buildings to increase energy have benefited many people, but on the downside have also contributed to the rise in indoor toxic mold. There are a number of different forms of toxic mold, including Stachybotrys, Aspergillus, Cladosporium, Penicillium, Fusarium, Acremonium, Alternaria, and Chaetomium.
Where can it be found? What are the effects of exposure?
Toxic molds thrive in damp environments, which includes inside of buildings such as homes or offices where the humidity levels are high. Toxic mold can increase the risk of damage, ill health and death through exposure to the toxic elements of the mold. Both humans and animals can be affected by exposure to toxic mold, and just some of the harmful effects and symptoms can include: respiratory problems, headaches, rash, memory loss, lung disease, immune system abnormalities, and even brain damage. Infants and the elderly are at increased risk of adverse effects due to their fragile immune systems, as are those with existing conditions such as asthma and other respiratory complications.
How can it be removed?
If you have toxic mold within your home or office you should arrange to get it removed as soon as possible and by professionals. Specialists in the area of toxic mold removal can ensure that the mold is eliminated and that your home or office is safe from toxicity from this mold. You should also thinkt about getting medical assistance to determine whether the toxic mold has affected your health in any way, and this is particularly important if you begin to experience adverse health effects that could be contributed to the toxicity from the mold. If any youngsters, elderly people, or people with pre-existing conditions (such as those mentioned above) have been exposed to the toxic mold, it is also a good idea to arrange a health check-up to be on the safe side.
What about the legal implications?
Over recent years, the number of lawsuits relating to toxic mold effects has risen due to the increase in the presence of toxic molds in the home or workplace. These lawsuits have included tenants that have sued landlords for failing to get toxic molds removed, and employees that have sued employers over toxic molds in the workplace. Toxic mold lawsuits have netted victims multi-million dollar settlements in some cases. This is because toxic mold can have such serious effects on one's health, and in some cases can even result in death. If the person that is responsible for the upkeep of a building fails to arrange for the proper removal of toxic molds, then he or she can be sued for this.
Those that have been affected by toxic mold are advised to seek legal assistance as well as medical attention, as it may be possible to pursue compensation for exposure to the toxic mold. As well as claiming for adverse health effects or exacerbation of existing health problems, you could also be eligible to seek compensation for effects such as repair costs, loss of use of property or items, relocation expenses, depreciation of property value damages, loss of earning, medical costs, and damages for mental effects.