Many former members of the United States military look to the service for assistance in finding housing after their military careers have ended. In most cases, the housing suits the needs of the ex-service member, but in one recent case in San Diego, the replacement housing did not pass inspection with the ex-officer who purchased a dwelling from the company that made a business out of selling dwelling units to former members of the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps.
The officer in question grew up on an army family in which her father and other relatives had served. She enlisted and served nine years when various health problems forced her to resign her commission. She purchased a house from Camp Pendleton & Quantico Housing, LLC, a subsidiary of LPC Pendleton Quantico PM LP.
Shortly after moving, the former soldier reported problems with various household pets, including rodents. Lincoln Military Housing sent a pest control company to attempt to cure the problems. The efforts were fruitless, and the ex-solder then commenced a lawsuit against the firms involved in the sale of the house, Camp Pendleton & Quantico Housing, LLC, a and LPC Pendleton Quantico PM LP.
The plaintiff began to suffer health problems such as headaches, aching joints, damage to her respiratory system, and pain and anxiety. The complaint alleges that the repairman who was sent to investigate the pest problem told the plaintiff that the house contained an unacceptable level of spore contamination. Physicians are alleged to have told plaintiff that her medical complaints were caused by mold contamination.
In its answer to the complaint, the defendant alleged that it had offered to place plaintiff in an acceptable and mold-free replacement dwelling. The defendant also filed a counterclaim against plaintiff alleged that she defamed the defendant by telling other residents of the housing that she had been “kicked out of base housing.” The counterclaim also alleged that the plaintiff damaged Lincoln Military’s reputation in the community.
The lawsuit is in its preliminary stages. Each party will undoubtedly retain one or more experts to inspect the housing and provide an opinion on the cause of plaintiff’s medical conditions. Depending upon the size of the civil docket in San Diego district court, the case may not come to trial for more than a year. Anyone who is concerned about the presence of mold in their homes may wish to consult an experienced environmental attorney for an evaluation of the evidence and preliminary test results and an opinion on the likelihood of recovering damages and attorneys’ fees.