Post: Former owners of Madison Twp. home awarded $4.3 million
Posted by Sharon on 10/23/10
A Lackawanna County jury awarded the former owners of a
Madison Twp. "dream" home $4.3 million for a mold problem
they said was caused by a township road project on Nashotka
The jury deliberated about 6½ hours over two days before
finding in favor of Teresa Perrini and Theresa Koziell and
against the township and Hanson Aggregates.
In assessing who was responsible for what happened to the
property, the jury assigned 76 percent negligence to the
township board of supervisors and 24 percent to Hanson
In breaking down the damages, the amount the jury awarded
for actual property loss amounted to slightly more than
$450,000, which is just a portion of the total amount
awarded for damages.
The jury awarded Ms. Perrini and Ms. Koziell more than $3.4
million, combined, for past and future post-traumatic
stress disorder and loss of life's pleasures in the use of
Ms. Perrini and Ms. Koziell moved into the home in 1996 and
began making improvements to what they called their dream
They added a deck and planted gardens and fruit trees on
the 3-acre property.
Their dream home turned into a moldy nightmare, which
according to their lawsuit, arose from a township road
improvement project completed in November 2002 that caused
water to drain onto the property.
The gardens died; the driveway cracked; the septic system
failed, and the well turned muddy.
The township claimed the water problems on the property
were not caused by the roadwork but by the fact the home
was 11 feet below the road.
The two women later moved out of the house, fearing for
their health after learning it contained more than five
different types of mold, one of which was stachybotrys,
a "toxic" mold. The two women hired an environmental
investigator to look at the home.
"I've never seen a house like this," said Laurence Molloy,
a New York City-based environmental investigator in a 2005
interview. "Basically, you have a house sitting in a lake."
The women, through their attorney, Nicholas Fick, sued in
December 2003, after seeing no progress to get the problem
Mr. Fick declined to comment Friday after the verdict was
Judge Carmen Minora presided over the 14-day trial.
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$4.3M Mold Jury Verdict
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