Thursday, October 23rd, 2008 | Author:

Water Intrusion & Mold

Water intrusion suffered by a condominium unit owner often leads to the development of mold.  Putting aside the fact that mold can negatively impact one’s health, unit owners face difficult challenges trying to repair their units because of the interplay between a “common element” and the unit owner’s responsibilities.  While common elements generally involve the unfinished perimeters of a unit, for example, condominium associations do not regularly take steps after a water intrusion event to remove drywall or to take other steps to dry out these perimeter areas (common elements or limited common elements as defined by the Declaration of Condominium).  When the Association fails to dry out the water intrusion affecting the common elements, the Association creates a positive environment for mold to develop.  As a result, if there is a water leak from a neighboring unit or from the roof of the condominium, etc., a unit owner recognizing the existence of water intrusion should immediately notify the Association.  If the Association does nothing, depending on the circumstances, then a unit owner can seek damages or injunctive relief to force the Association to maintain the common elements which it is required to do by statute.  Obviously, a unit owner wants to ensure that their unit is free from mold and if the Association does not maintain or repair the common elements following a water intrusion event, then the unit owner has the statutory right to take legal action.
 
Of course, each case must be evaluated on its own merits as each case has its own factual circumstances. This article does not constitute legal advice or the formation of an attorney-client relationship, and is not for re-publication without express permission of the author.