PONTIAC, Mich. -- Feb. 26, 2009 (ClickonDetroit.com) -- A Michigan couple and their insurance company are in a dispute over a black mold infestation in their home.
Mary and Carl Becker have been out of their home for two and half years while repairs were being completed on their home in Pontiac that was filled with mold and toxins.
The couple said they were away from their home in July 2006 when two pipes burst in their basement. The couple said their basement was flooded for several days before their daughter discovered what had happened.
They said a plumber fixed the burst and they returned to their home after a few days of vacation.
Mary Becker said she began experiencing dizzy spells, memory lapses, sinus infections and bronchitis and was diagnosed with toxic poison disorder because it was discovered that black mold had infiltrated the home.
The couple's homeowner's insurance, AutoOwners of Lansing, initially approved the repairs then halted the work in progress, stating the couple's policy did not cover mold.
"Had they not misrepresented the coverage, probably four or five thousands dollars would have solved this case," said Carl Becker, who is a civil action lawyer. "Instead they let toxins and spores go all over my house."
In July 2008, the couple said the insurance company stopped paying for their rental house even though their original house was not yet inhabitable.
"Mold is one issue, consumer rights is another," said Carl Becker.
The Beckers are seeking damages for fraud and misrepresentation and the almost $500,000 they said it will take to restore the house back to being livable.
The Beckers have started a Web site, www.ipetitions.com, urging lawmakers to protect families against mold.
The insurance company did not return calls for comment. The attorneys for the insurance company declined to comment.
An Oakland County Circuit Court judge Wednesday gave the two sides a week to try and settle some of the issues outside of court.