Verdicts & Settlements
Mold match in ex-prosecutor’s nose leads to settlement in ‘sick building’ courthouse suit
By Debra Cassens Weiss
Oct 24, 2013, 11:50 am CDT
A former prosecutor in Florida has settled a “sick building” suit that claimed the mold in her sinuses was caused by the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale.
Stefanie Krathen Ginnis will receive $166,500 in a settlement approved by county commissioners on Tuesday, the Sun Sentinel reports. She was among 19 current and former courthouse employees who sued and was the first to settle. The plaintiffs claimed they became sick as a result of toxic mold and asbestos fibers at the courthouse.
Ginnis’ husband, Eric Ginnis, was also a plaintiff. He told the Sun Sentinel his wife had “strong evidence” of cause because the mold found in her nose during complex sinus surgery matched the mold in the courthouse. Stefanie Krathen Ginnis worked at the courthouse from 2003 to 2010.
Assistant County Attorney Tony Rodriguez said the settlement doesn’t signal that the county is willing to settle all the cases. “We have to look at all of these on a case-by-case basis,” he told the Sun Sentinel.
Construction has begun on a new courthouse and could be completed in about two years.