$6 million settlement approved in Horry Electric construction defect case

Source: Richardson, Patrick, Westbrook & Brickman, LLC
Source: Richardson, Patrick, Westbrook & Brickman, LLC

MT. PLEASANT, SC (WMBF) – Horry Electric has reached a $6 million settlement in a class action suit over the company's Good Cents program, and its requirement for a vapor barrier, which the plaintiffs claimed promoted mold growth.

The Horry Electric Cooperative's Good Cents program allowed homeowners to save money on their electric bill by installing cost-cutting utilities in certain homes. One of the requirements of the program was the use of a vapor barrier in heated areas. However, the suit claimed that requiring a vapor barrier for the interior side of the exterior walls was a defective design that promoted mold growth.

The plaintiffs alleged damages for out-of-pocket repair costs and related construction expenses.

"Most people's home is their biggest investment," said Nate Fata of Nata Fata, PA. of Surfside Beach, who represented the plaintiffs along with Chris Tuck and Jay Ward of Richardson, Patrick, Westbrook & Brickman, LLC. "We are very pleased that these homeowners will be compensated for damages caused by the vapor barrier requirement."

The settlement agreement, approved on May 30 by Horry County Court Judge Benjamin Culbertson, established a minimum recovery of $2,000 per class member, with a maximum recovery of $12,000 if certain criteria are met. The suit was filed in 2011.

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