A judge ruled that several Chinese drywall cases that were consolidated in one Florida county may move forward despite the fact that rulings in drywall cases filed in federal courts have not yet been issued.
Glenn Kelley, Palm Beach County Circuit Judge, rejected arguments by builders and drywall suppliers that the cases should not move forward until after the federal cases are resolved.
The federal suits were filed by more than 2,100 homeowners who claim that their homes were ruined by defective drywall from China used by home builders. The drywall emits noxious odors and toxic chemicals that can cause wiring, plumbing and heating equipment to corrode.
Judge Kelley's ruling allows seventy-four cases currently pending in Palm Beach County Circuit Court to move forward without delay.
Defective Chinese drywall has been linked to respiratory issues and electrical problems in thousands of homes built from 2000 to 2008 throughout Florida and Louisiana.
The drywall had been used in new homes for nearly eight years during the latest housing boom after hurricanes destroyed homes along the Gulf Coast.
The cost to homeowners of removing the drywall is estimated at more than $100,000 per home.