Chinese Drywall Update: Knauf Settles with Beazer for $18
per Square Foot
Since losing decisively in court last month, Knauf
Plasterboard Tianjin has been courting builders with offers to
settle claims relating to Chinese drywall. Last week, Knauf
announced that it has reached a settlement with Beazer Homes to
compensate the builder for its bad drywall losses —
for a reported sum of $18 per square foot, far short of the
damages awarded to plaintiffs by Federal Judge Eldon Fallon.
The Fort Myers News-Press has the story
Beazer reaches settlement with Chinese drywall
," by Mary Wozniak).
Attorneys for homeowners say the settlement amount is too
low to cover their costs. "This settlement amount is obscene,"
Boca Raton attorney Allison Grant told the Palm Beach Post
Impact of Chinese drywall settlement unclear for those in South
," by Allison Ross). But Grant pointed out that it's
not yet clear whether Beazer will continue to pursue other
defendants for more money. Cases pulled into New Orleans
Federal court's Multidistrict Litigation process have mentioned
other targets, including importers, distributors, drywall
contractors, and insurance companies.
And last week, new information emerged indicating that one
Florida drywall distributor, Banner Supply, knew as far back as
2006 that it had supplied builders and homeowners with
contaminated drywall — but kept quiet under a
confidential agreement with Knauf Tianjin, the Miami Herald
Miami supplier knew of Chinese drywall problems
," by Nirvi
Shah). Writes the Herald, "When the distributor turned to the
manufacturer with complaints from builders, the Chinese company
replaced Banner Supply's inventory of Chinese-made drywall with
American-made products. But Miami-based Banner Supply never
said anything about the complaints to the government or
customers who didn't complain, information that could have
prevented thousands of other homeowners from getting into the
expensive, smelly predicaments they now face."