The following news article was published by Start and Stripes and written by Rose L. Thayer. It was published on December 30th, 2019. The original article can be viewed HERE. The article and its contents are the property of Stars and Stripes.
“Three Lawsuits Filed in San Diego Over Marine Corps Families’ Housing Conditions”
The Clover family is one of three Marine Corps families to file lawsuits against Lincoln Military Housing in San Diego for negligence in maintaining safe base housing since a fourth Marine Corps family won a similar lawsuit against the company in September. Court documents from the Clovers describe constant water leaks in their home while their son’s health deteriorated.
By ROSE L. THAYER | STARS AND STRIPES Published: December 30, 2019
Three lawsuits have been filed in San Diego against Lincoln Military Housing after the private military housing company’s September loss against a Marine Corps family who sued for negligence related to moldy conditions in their home.
Lenden Webb, a lawyer involved in two of the three lawsuits filed in San Diego Superior Court, said there’s “strength in numbers” when going against a large, private company such as Lincoln, which manages more than 31,000 military housing units nationwide.
“Enough people need to make a stand so that they change the way they do business,” he said.
A representative for Lincoln declined to comment on the lawsuits.
The two Marine Corps families Webb represents are suing Lincoln for negligence, fraud, and rent abatement, among other allegations, related to mold in housing at Camp Pendleton and Marine Corps Air Station Miramar that left members in each family sick.
The lawsuit complaint for the Clover family, filed Nov. 22, outlines the deterioration of their now 8-year-old son’s health over five years in base housing, as well as the family’s continued requests for repairs related to water damage and leaks.
Active-duty Marine Jason Clover, his wife, Valerie, and their two children lived at Camp Pendleton for about five years beginning in June 2014, according to court documents. They discovered mold in the windowsills when they moved in. Within a month, the kitchen sink began leaking — an issue that plagued their entire stay at the home.
All the while, their son, developed eczema, hives and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and visited his doctor more than 10 times within a year for those conditions, according to court documents. Other symptoms developed and conditions worsened until he was diagnosed with pediatric acute-onset neuropsychiatric syndrome that a physician linked to chronic exposure to mold.
He also developed anxiety and nosebleeds that lasted up to 30 minutes. In March, a medical test found five types of mold in his body, according to court documents. An air quality test done on the home detected the same mold spores.
The son of Jason Clover, an active-duty Marine, continuously broke out in hives while living in base housing at Camp Pendleton, Calif., where mold was discovered in his bathroom. He also suffered from behavioral symptoms, anxiety and nosebleeds that lasted more than 30 minutes. His family has filed a lawsuit against Lincoln Military Housing, the company responsible for maintaining family housing at the base.
A second family filed a lawsuit with Webb but chose to remain anonymous. The complaint, filed Dec. 10, outlines the problems faced by an active-duty Marine stationed at Miramar, his wife and their two children during a 10-month stay in base housing.
While the Marine was deployed, his family moved into the home in January and noticed a mildew smell and “the air in the house felt heavy, damp and humid,” according to court documents.
To remedy that, Lincoln employees told the wife to buy a dehumidifier, according to the documents. She bought the machine, but water continued to enter the home and the master bedroom carpet remained “consistently soaked with water.”
When she questioned whether the wetness had caused mold, a maintenance worker told her that when mold was present, he could smell it, and he didn’t smell mold in her home, according to the documents.
It wasn’t until the Marine returned home in April that the couple believed their ongoing maintenance requests were taken seriously, he said during a phone interview.
“It’s frustrating to me that it takes the active-duty service member to come home and raise a stink when my spouse is there living in it every single day. That’s the most frustrating part,” the Marine said. “It made my focus at my place of work very difficult.”
By September, the family was moved from the home to make repairs. After being moved to two hotels, the family finally chose to move away as the Marine prepares to deploy again.
Contact Webb Law Group Now
Have you or a family member experienced mold-related medical symptoms, disorders, or illness as a result of your time spent living in Camp Pendleton’s military housing in San Diego? Lincoln Military Housing may be responsible and you may need legal representation.
If you feel you may need legal advice about a claim of this nature, the team at Webb Law Group is here to answer any questions you might have. Webb Law Group, APC is a reputable legal firm with experience in matters involving California law. We currently have two mold-related cases open against Lincoln Military Housing. If you feel you have a similar negligence claim against Lincoln Military Housing for mold-related health issues sustained during your stay at Camp Pendleton, please contact the team at Webb Law Group as soon as possible.
Having a reputable attorney by your side for matters of this nature will offer you the best possible chance of navigating legal battles and lengthy court cases. If you feel you need legal representation, we are happy to review your legal needs and provide consultation and support where necessary. For questions, or to schedule a consultation, contact Webb Law Group today at 559-431-4888 (Fresno) or 619-399-7700 (San Diego).