Close Menu X

How Can We Help?

Lead poisoning: A hidden hazard for unwary New York renters

How many apartments in New York carry the threat of possible lead exposure to occupants? No one has a solid number. What we do know, because the city recently admitted as much, is that at least 820 young children living in units controlled by the public Housing Authority tested positive for lead in their blood between 2012 and 2016. We also know that the presumption under law is that any building in the city built before 1960 had lead paint, and a major portion of local housing fits that description.

Another provision in the law requires building owners to inform tenants of any known lead paint hazards. And owners of buildings built before 1978 that have three or more units must conduct annual tenant surveys to identify potential problems. If any apartment's occupants are children under the age of six, landlords must remediate any lead hazards. If that doesn't happen and a child develops lead poisoning, a landlord could be liable under a negligence claim.

Lead poisoning facts

Lead poisoning is not rare. Millions of children suffer exposure every year and those under age five are at greatest risk. No level of lead in children's blood is considered safe. Experts have reached a consensus that a level of five micrograms per deciliter in a child is way above average. Also, research has shown that even very low levels negatively affect children's mental and physical development. High levels can be deadly.

More disconcerting is that lead poisoning often goes undetected until levels are already dangerously high and damage has already been done.

Obviously, avoiding exposure to lead is important. But that can be difficult because lead is present in so many things; old paint, toys, home furnishings, plumbing, and even the solder used to seal canned goods from some foreign countries.

Proper home maintenance by tenants is crucial, but it is a landlord's responsibility to deal with general repairs and to see they are done following safe handling practices.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Our Awards and Accolades

    • The Best Lawyers in America
    • The National Trail Lawyers | Top 100 | Trail Lawyers
    • Newsweek Leaders In Showcase Personal Injury | 2011
    • Lawyers of Distinction | 2018
    • 2014 | Litigator Awards | Ranked Top 1% of Lawyers
    • Nation's Premier | NAOPIA | Top Ten Attorney | Personal Injury
    • American Law Society | Official Home of America's Top Lawyers
    • Best Lawyers | Best Law Firms | U.S.News & News Report | Rankings
    • New York Law Journal | 2015 Verdicts & Settlements | Hall of Fame | Motor Vehicle | Sakkas, Cahn & Weiss, LLP | Top 20 Verdict
    • Million Dollar Advocates Forum
    • Verdict Search's | Top NY Verdicts
    • Certified
    • National Association of Distinguished Counsel | Nation's Top One Percent | NADC
    • 2016 | Litigation Elite - Top 100 Trail Lawyers
    • Martindale-Hubbell | Distinguished | Peer Rated for High Professional Achievement | 2017
    • Who's who Legal | WWL
    • The National Advocates | Top 100 Lawyers
    • America's Top 100 Attorneys | Top 100
    • The National Trial Lawyers | Top 100 Trail Lawyers
    • Super Lawyers
    • Best Law Firms of America | LifeTime Member
    • Avvo | 10.0 | Superb | Top Attorney Personal Injury
Email Our Attorneys

Have Questions? Get A Free Case Review

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy