Brad Jackson recently helped a client win an arbitration award of nearly $1 million against Joplin, Missouri-based TAMKO Building Products Inc. after the company’s TAMKO TW Metal and Tile Underlayment roofing product failed and caused extensive damage to a newly constructed ranch house.
The award was issued on July 23 following a multiday arbitration proceeding before Chief Justice Linda B. Thomas (Ret.) of JAMS (Judicial Arbitration and Mediation Services, Inc.).
TAMKO Home Roof Fails
The case stemmed from the construction of a multimillion-dollar home and guest house in rural Bosque County. Mr. Jackson represented the individual homeowners. Dallas attorney Jeff Cook of Sullivan & Cook LLC represented the entity created to hold title to the property.
Roughly two years after construction was completed in 2015, a thick, tar-like substance began seeping out of the gutters and collecting onto the ground around the property. Eventually, the sticky tar began oozing from seams in the roof and causing extensive damage inside the structures and surrounding areas. The homeowners spent more than $1 million of their own money to help clean up the mess and repair related damage.
After it was determined that the problem stemmed from TAMKO’s faulty roof underlayment, the company acknowledged that it had falsely claimed its product could withstand temperatures of up to 250 degrees.
However, TAMKO argued, among other things, that the company’s limited warranty prevented it from being responsible for any damages in excess of the approximately $10,000 that Mr. Jackson’s clients had paid for the roofing underlayment material.
TAMKO eventually reimbursed the homeowners’ insurance company, AIG Property Casualty Inc., for the $637,425 that AIG had paid towards the repairs and damages. TAMKO then claimed that the homeowners had been fully compensated and that the company owed them no additional money.
Arbitrator Rules in Favor of Brad Jackson’s Clients
Mr. Jackson countered with claims against TAMKO for product liability, negligence, breach of implied warranties, and violation of the Deceptive Trade Practices Act (DTPA).
In the final award, Chief Justice Thomas ordered TAMKO to pay Mr. Jackson’s clients a total of $702,784 for remediation costs and $284,340 for attorneys’ fees, plus an additional $55,000 in attorneys’ fees in the event of future legal appeals. The arbitration award is in addition to the payment previously received by the homeowners from AIG for a total recovery in excess of $1.6 million.