Chinese Drywall Manufacturer, U.S. Home Builder Settle Over Florida Homes

Chinese Drywall Manufacturer, U.S. Home Builder Settle Over Florida Homes

ATLANTA - (Mealey's) A key Chinese drywall manufacturer and a major U.S. home builder confirmed on May 18 that they have reached agreement on compensation for repairs the builder made to a number of homes it constructed in South Florida.

Don Hayden of Baker & McKenzie in Miami, counsel for Knauf Plasterboard (Tianjin) Co. Ltd. (KPT), said in an e-mailed statement that his client and Atlanta-based builder Beazer Homes have crafted a joint settlement regarding homes in two housing developments in which the builder's subcontractors installed KPT drywall.

Hayden said KPT has been in discussions with several builders in recent weeks seeking a reasonable solution to repair homes built with KPT drywall, hinting that other, similar settlements are possible.

"The settlement with Beazer is part of KPT's effort to get this issue behind them and move forward," Hayden said.  "It shows that a solution is possible when there is agreement on reasonable repair costs."

Terms of the settlement are confidential and were not disclosed, but a joint press release issued today said that "KPT has developed a reasonable settlement offer to extend to homebuilders that will meet residents' expectations to live comfortably in their houses."

It was not immediately known what effect the settlement may have on the claims of homeowners in the affected developments.

[Editor's Note:  Full coverage will be in the June issue of Mealey's Litigation Report: Construction Defects. For all of your legal news needs, please visit www.lexisnexis.com/mealeys.]

For more information, call editor Gerald C. Matics at 610-205-1131, or e-mail him at gerald.matics@lexisnexis.com.