The New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA)–landlord to more than 500,000 New Yorkers–is legally obligated to ensure its housing is safe for residents. This includes testing and removing lead from apartments across the city. However, an investigation by THE CITY revealed that NYCHA failed to perform thousands of mandatory lead paint inspections in aging complexes, and some 5,000 NYC buildings deemed “lead-free” contained the toxic metal.
Lead exposure delays the cognitive development of young children and can negatively affect their immune and cardiovascular systems. Since 2012, more than 1,160 children living in NYCHA public housing have registered dangerously elevated levels of lead in their systems–underscoring the serious nature of this public health hazard.
Rheingold Giuffra Ruffo & Plotkin LLP represents families whose children have been poisoned by lead paint exposure in NYCHA apartments. We offer free consultations to determine if you are eligible to file a lead paint lawsuit.
Contact our skilled attorneys today to discuss your potential or existing lead paint poisoning case.
In 2017, the Commissioner of the New York City Department of Investigation (DOI) released a scathing report documenting NYCHA’s non-compliance and fraudulent reporting regarding lead paint safety checks. DOI Commissioner Mark G. Peters wrote:
DOI’s investigation found that NYCHA failed to do critical lead safety inspections and then falsely certified that they were meeting these legal requirements. This is the fourth time in two years that DOI has found NYCHA to be careless when it comes to tenant safety. NYCHA has an obligation both to protect tenants and to be honest with the public. Today’s report should be an important step in ensuring that NYCHA meets these obligations.
The use of lead-based paint in residential buildings was banned by NYC more than 63 years ago, but homes built before the sanction may still contain traces of this heavy metal. Peeling old paint creates lead dust that toddlers and young children are likely to ingest or inhale.
Per federal and city laws, NYCHA must perform lead paint inspections for all apartments built before 1978 that have not been previously inspected or abated. Lead paint hazards are presumed to exist in NYCHA housing built before 1960, has three or more apartments, or has a child under the age of six residing in the apartment.
If lead paint hazards are identified through laboratory analysis, NYCHA visits twice yearly to look for signs of cracking, peeling, or other damage and schedules remediation to fix it when necessary. A Notice of Evaluation is supposed to be mailed to tenants no later than 15 days after the inspection date. Today, all lead paint abatement work is overseen by an EPA-certified supervisor who ensures all protocols are followed.
Lead is a known neurotoxin that can cause permanent learning disabilities in children exposed to dust from cracking and peeling paint. Authorities are unsure how many public housing units may have been affected by the NYCHA’s ongoing deception.
Over the past seven years, NYCHA has shown complete disregard for the health and safety of residents. This wrongdoing has spurred legal action from the families of lead-poisoned children.
Impacted families across New York City are seeking justice and fair compensation with the help of lead paint poisoning lawyers. In complex cases like these, experience makes all the difference.
Rheingold Giuffra Ruffo & Plotkin LLP won a $57 million verdict against NYCHA for its failure to test for lead paint as required. The plaintiff’s 4-year-old child, who was moved to Special Ed, suffered lead poisoning after living in an NYCHA apartment that had supposedly been “tested” and deemed lead-free. Subsequent inspections found significant quantities of lead in the unit, explaining the child’s dangerously elevated blood-lead tests.
If your child has been diagnosed with lead poisoning in NYCHA housing, you deserve to be compensated accordingly. Your choice of legal representation matters and our team at Rheingold Giuffra Ruffo & Plotkin LLP is uniquely poised to seek justice for NYC residents.
Our recent multi-million-dollar verdict speaks volumes about our commitment and skill in the courtroom. Contact Attorney Thomas Giuffra to discuss your situation and eligibility to file a NYCHA lead paint lawsuit.
Our team has recovered tens of millions of dollars for victims of lead paint poisoning from NYCHA properties. Contact our firm today to discuss your case.