Lead poisoning can cause permanent harm in young children. If you or your loved one has suffered lead poisoning in your rental home or apartment from deteriorated lead-based paint, you deserve financial compensation. But what are your rights? What can you do to protect yourself and your family?
That’s not an easy answer but the first step to obtaining answers to your questions is to call the attorneys at Riley | Ersoff LLP. We have prosecuted more lead poisoning cases than any other firm in California and work on cases throughout the state including Los Angeles, San Francisco and Oakland. Call us, we’re here to help.
HOW DO I KNOW IF MY CHILD WAS POISONED BY LEAD-BASED PAINT
Lead poisoning is impossible to confirm without a capillary or venous blood test. Hair sampling and other forms of so-called lead testing are inadequate, insufficient and do not hold up in court.
Lead poisoning is typically caused by deteriorated lead-based paint and lead dust in homes built prior to 1978. If you have an older rental home or apartment with peeling, cracked, chipped or flaking paint and you believe your child was both exposed to and ingested lead-based paint or lead dust, look for the following symptoms:
- Learning Difficulties
- Oppositional Behavior
In extreme cases of lead poisoning, your child can suffer from:
- Weight Loss
- Hearing Loss
If you believe that your child was exposed to ingested deteriorated lead-based paint, call your child’s physician and get a blood test right away. Don’t wait! Lead poisoning causes permanent harm. There is no safe lead level. Any amount of lead in a child’s blood can cause harm.
CAN I GET A LEAD POISONING SETTLEMENT?
Determining if you are eligible for a lead poisoning settlement depends on various factors specific to your situation. It is essential to consult with a qualified attorney who specializes in lead poisoning cases. They can evaluate the details of your case and provide accurate legal advice tailored to your circumstances. Here are some key considerations:
- Proof of lead poisoning: To pursue a lead poisoning settlement, you will need to establish that your child has suffered from lead poisoning. This typically involves obtaining medical records and test results confirming elevated blood lead levels.
- Landlord’s negligence: You must demonstrate that your landlord failed to fulfill their legal obligations in identifying and addressing deteriorated lead-based paint. This could include negligence in conducting proper inspections, making necessary repairs, or providing adequate warnings about the presence of lead-based paint.
- Causation: It is crucial to establish a causal link between the landlord’s negligence and your child’s lead poisoning. This requires demonstrating that the lead-based paint in the property was the direct cause of your child’s elevated blood lead levels.
- Damages: To seek a settlement, you need to show that your child has suffered harm and incurred damages as a result of the lead poisoning. This can include medical expenses, ongoing treatment costs, pain and suffering, educational expenses, and any other relevant damages associated with the injuries.
- Statute of limitations: There is a specific time limit within which you must file a lawsuit for lead poisoning. The statute of limitations varies by jurisdiction, so it is crucial to consult with an attorney promptly to ensure you meet the legal deadlines.
By consulting with an experienced attorney, they can assess the specific details of your case, evaluate the strength of your claim, and guide you on whether pursuing a lead poisoning settlement is viable. They can provide legal advice based on your jurisdiction’s laws and help you navigate the legal process to seek compensation for your child’s injuries.
WHAT FACTORS AFFECT THE SETTLEMENT AMOUNT?
Calculating lead poisoning settlements can be difficult and time-consuming.
An experienced attorney knows how to prove injuries and ensure you recover your full compensation amount. Settlement calculations usually include the following categories:
- The extent of your child’s neurological harm
- Your pain, suffering, and emotional distress from watching your child’s deficit behavior
- Your child’s future pain, suffering and emotional distress
In some circumstances, if your landowner or property manager willfully and intentionally neglected to inform you or another tenant of a lead problem on the premises, the judge may award punitive damages. Punitive damages are awarded to punish a defendant for egregious conduct.
How Long Does a Lead Poisoning Case Take?
Filing and prosecuting a lead poisoning case and receiving compensation can take anywhere from 12-24 months. Factors that affect the time required to file and prosecute a lead poisoning case include:
- The time is takes to obtain and review all relevant medical records
- The time required to review health department records regarding the landlord and the property
- The time it takes to conduct neurological testing of your child. This includes assessments by a developmental pediatrician, neuropsychologist, educational psychologist, speech pathologist and other experts
- The landlord’s willingness to settle
- The court’s schedule
Although this sounds like a long time – and it is – landlords and their insurance companies do not care about you and your child. They are going to fight the case and do everything possible to delay honoring your family’s claim.
However, through perseverance, hard work, and years of experience, Riley | Ersoff LLP has recovered millions of dollars for victims of lead poisoning.
CONTACT A QUALIFIED LEAD POISONING ATTORNEY TODAY
If your child has suffered lead poisoning, seek medical attention for your child immediately. The medical report you receive will help you prove your case and strengthen your argument in court.
Our dedicated team will provide you hands-on legal services and thoroughly investigate your case. We will answer your questions and help you through the process. For a free consultation, call our office at 866-548-6137 or fill out our online form today.