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The $32M Question: How Should Insurers Approach First-Party Claims? There are at least 32 million reasons why insurance companies should take mold claims very seriously.

In May 2001, a Texas jury awarded Melinda Ballard $32 million, finding Farmers Insurance Company had committed bad faith in handling a first-party mold claim in Ballard v. Fire Ins. Exch. Prior to the jury verdict, Farmers had spent over a million dollars in an attempt to address the mold problems in the Ballard residence.

Melinda Ballard initially received more than $100,000 from Farmers to repair water damage to her 22-room mansion. The water damage was allegedly not properly addressed and members of the Ballard family subsequently began experiencing dizziness and memory loss.

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