A Hillsborough County Circuit Judge ruled that a family’s home damaged by the defective Chinese drywall should be covered by their homeowners insurance policy.
According to an article in the Miami-Herald, Judge Robert Foster said that he found no exclusion in Craig & Melissa Walker’s insurance policy. The Walkers sued the Springfield, IL based company- Teachers Insurance Co. for refusing to cover their damages caused by defective Chinese drywall.
The Judge Foster said that the drywall was not “defective” because it served its purpose as drywall, however it also emits a corrosive gas. The policy covers smoke damage, and Judge Foster interpreted smoke to be the same as gas.
“The court finds that the ordinary meaning as found in a Merriam-Webster dictionary, defines ‘smoke’ as a ‘suspension of particles in a gas.’ “
He went on to say, “The court has applied the definition that allows coverage, which is at least as reasonable as the definition that might exclude coverage.”