Lead is a heavy metal, which when ingested and absorbed into the human body, especially by children under the age of six, can cause severe health complications. There are many ways by which lead contamination occurs in homes and other places. One leading factor contributing to lead poisoning is lead paint. Because of this, the federal government has passed some laws protecting people from lead poisoning due to lead based paint.
In 1978, the federal government banned lead from being used in household paint, or for paint used for furniture and children’s toys. Even then, there are an estimated 40% of homes across the United States that have lead paint and are considered as hazardous to health, if the lead paint is not in good condition. Such homes are usually homes that have been built before lead paint was banned.
The Disclosure of Lead Paint Rule
Disclosure rules regarding presence of lead paint have been in effect since 1996. In September 1996, owners of more than four residential premises came under the purview of these rules, whereas in December 1996, owners of less than four residential premises also came under the purview of such nationwide disclosure rules.
The lead paint disclosure requirements apply to all homes built before 1978 and come into effect when any such home is being sold, bought, or rented out. Sellers, landlords, and property agents; are all required to abide by the disclosure rules, which are as follows:
The seller or agent must make such disclosure, and also obtain a confirmation from the prospective buyer/ tenant that such disclosure has been made and that they have received the necessary pamphlet and the safety warnings.
If any seller, owner, or agent is in non-compliance of the above disclosure rule, and has failed to intimate you of the presence of lead paint and other lead based hazards, then they can be held criminally and civilly responsible. A landlord is responsible for the removal of lead paint from your rented home (if there is any). Failure to do so can also result in criminal and civil punishment.
If you have suffered from any injuries because of lead poisoning due to lead paint or other lead contamination, then you have a right, under federal law, to recover damages and compensation for your injuries. You should avail the services of a lead poisoning lawyer, who can help you to identify the party at fault, and also to recover any and all real damages, compensation, and punitive damages that you are entitled to.
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