A lead paint lawyer can help represent you when lead-based paints cause personal loss, trauma, or death. Lead paint was originally designed as a more effective, longer-lasting paint than traditional paints used in older homes. However, adverse health consequences have shown lead paint to cause a variety of illnesses, especially in young children. These can include nervous system damage, hearing loss, stunted growth, reduced mental capacity, and delayed development.
Despite an international movement to stop the use of lead in paint, manufacturers and lead producers funded a massive effort in the United States to delay any sort of legislation regarding lead. By 1971 it was estimated that two hundred children a year were dying from lead poisoning. In that same year, congress passed the Lead Based Poisoning Prevention Act, which restricted residential use of lead paint and stopped its application on toys and children's furniture. This did reduce the number of lead-related child deaths. However, marine, farm equipment, automobile,and industrial paints and finishes are not covered by this act and continue to contain lead.
By the time U.S. legislation was aligned with European lead regulation, millions of tons of lead had been applied to the exterior and interiors of buildings, cribs, toys, and porch railings. One estimation claims there are three million tons of lead in the environment and 57 million housing units that still contain some amount of lead paint. In most cases, housing built before 1978 has some lead paint. Houses built before 1950 pose a potentially greater risk as older paints have higher concentrations of lead.
Blood testing is the sole reliable method for diagnosing lead poisoning. The test results are measured in micrograms per deciliter. In the 1960's, people were not considered lead poisoned until the blood level was 60 mg/deciliter. In 1978 the threshold number was cut to 30 mg/deciliter, and it was lowered again in 1985. Currently, the Center for Disease Control states the threshold for lead poisoning is just 10 mg/deciliter.
Lead reduction efforts have continued in the form of the Residential Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Act. Passed by Congress in 1992, landlords are required by law to inform potential tenants of the presence of lead paint on the rental property and/or perform lead abatement to reduce the risk of exposure. Disclosure of the presence of lead to potential buyers of a home is also mandated by law.
Even with the reduction efforts of Congress, it is estimated that over 3.5 million homes in the United States still contain hazardous levels of lead paint or lead-contaminated dust. Lead inspections are the legal right of potential buyers as are inspections for radon and asbestos. Contractors should also test for lead prior to any renovation work to prevent liability for raising lead dust or uncovering lead paint during construction. The federal government itself has been required to abate its own properties constructed prior to 1978.
If you or a loved one has suffered an injury, illness or death, as the result of an environmental pollutant, such as lead paint, and you believe the exposure was someone else's fault, call VanDerGinst Law at 1-866-843-7367 or click here for a FREE online case evaluation. The initial consultation is free of charge. If we agree to handle your lead paint case, we will work on a contingency fee basis, which means we get paid for our services only if, and when, there is a money recovery for you. In many cases a lead paint lawsuit must be filed before an applicable expiration date, known as a statute of limitations. Please call right away to ensure that you do not waive your right to possible compensation.