Drywall Deal Offers Small Payouts to Victims, Big Fees for Attorneys

"Lowe’s Companies Inc., the nation’s No. 2 home improvement chain, has set off a legal firestorm by agreeing to a national settlement over tainted drywall in a class-action suit being decided in a Georgia state court.

The $6.5 million settlement would pay relatively small amounts to individuals who had the tainted drywall in their homes. But the handful of attorneys who quietly negotiated the deal will receive a separate payment of $2.1 million. Victims will be compensated mostly in Lowe’s gift cards, offered in the amounts of $50, $250 or $2,000, depending on the level of documentation they can provide. Those who can prove they’ve suffered more than $2,000 in damages may also receive up to $2,500 in cash.
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Customers would not necessarily receive full refunds for the defective product they purchased."

Joaquin Sapien reports for ProPublica and Aaron Kessler reports for the Sarasota Herald-Tribune August 12, 2010.


Source: ProPublica, 08/12/2010