Does this affect my health?
Our medical experts have advised that Hydrogen Sulfide exposure, even at low concentrations, can seriously damage your health. Some examples are irritation to the eyes, ears and throat, difficulty breathing, headaches, nose bleeds, poor memory, tiredness, and balance problems. The effects are heightened for those with preexisting conditions such as asthma or severe allergies.
I’m sick, what do I do?
We highly recommend if you are feeling ill to seek medical treatment immediately with a medical provider.
Why do I need a lawyer?
To force New-Indy to take responsibility, pay for the harm that they have caused everyone, abide by the environmental rules and regulations, and be a good corporate neighbor. If you want to be fairly compensated for the loss of your property value and physical injuries caused by Hydrogen Sulfide and other contaminants released by New-Indy, we believe you need a lawyer.
Why should I hire you?
We have a team of lawyers and environmental experts who have been investigating the scope and the severity of the contamination. We have successfully handled complex cases with many victims against huge corporations and have achieved great results for our clients. We hope that you will choose to put your trust in our team.
How much will this cost me?
You will not have to pay anything out of pocket for our representation.
How do you get paid?
We are taking this case on a contingency basis which means that we only get paid if we are successful. If we win or reach a settlement, we will ask the Court to award us attorney fees which will be a percentage of what is recovered. If we lose, we get nothing. More importantly, if we lose, you owe nothing.
Who are we?
This is a consortium of 4 different law firms, Elrod Pope and the Stavrinakis Firm both in South Carolina, plus Schochor, Federico & Staton located in Baltimore, Maryland and Baird Mandalas Brockstedt located in Delaware. Our firms have litigated other Hydrogen Sulfide and air and water contamination cases in the past and are working together on this case.
A legal team?
It is important for you to know that in addition to our four law firms, we have retained more than a dozen experts and consultants. We have a very good legal and technical expert team. We are well funded and will spend whatever is necessary to hold New-Indy accountable and reasonably and fairly compensate you for the harm it has caused. Fair and complete justice in a case like this often does not come quickly, especially when the liable party remains in denial. We believe in truth, transparency, and accountability, and appreciate your patience as we work hard on your behalf to achieve the best outcome possible. Two of our four firms settled a similar lawsuit in Delaware in April. You can read about that case at www.mountairecase.com
What is our approach to this case?
Our approach will be to understand the nature and extent of the pollution caused by New-Indy and seek a permanent solution to the entire problem. The permanent solution starts with forcing New-Indy to stop polluting, upgrade its plant and operations, and clean up the environment. In addition, we will seek compensation for personal injuries, medical care, and decreased property values cause by New-Indy’s conduct.
We filed a class action lawsuit on June 8, 2021. What that means is we have one case on behalf of many, instead of individual cases. We now wait for the defense to file a response to our lawsuit. After that, we begin the discovery phase of litigation. Discovery is the exchange of information between the parties. Discovery can be written (interrogatories and requests for documents) or verbal (depositions).
What is remediation?
This is one of the most important aspects of the case and is something that separates our case from the other lawsuits filed against New-Indy. New- Indy’s operations continue to pollute the environment. This is an ongoing problem and New-Indy has not done enough to reduce production or fix the problems they caused. A primary goal when we agree to represent you and your neighbors is to force New-Indy to stop polluting the area and clean up the mess it has created (and continues to make worse).
How does remediation impact you?
We are attempting to secure a clean environment as soon as possible, not only for you, but for your children and grandchildren. Additionally, we are taking steps to ensure that the air you breathe is clean and safe so that you can open your windows whenever you want.
Many of you may suffer a decrease in your property value. This is also part of our damages case. We have retained a property valuation expert and it will be necessary to obtain information related to your property. Additionally, you have a claim due to the loss of use and enjoyment of your property.
If you decide to become our client, you will receive a questionnaire regarding your medical history and current health complaints. It will be necessary to have a doctor provide an opinion relating any medical conditions to the air emissions or water pollution. To build this part of the case, we will need your cooperation and assistance to obtain the necessary medical information from your health care providers. It is very important that you respond and provide all of the requested information.
How will I know what is going on?
We will send you updates via email every 10 to 12 weeks. Sometimes litigation can move slowly, but we will always keep you informed. In addition to recurring updates, you may call us to discuss any questions or concerns you may have as the case moves forward.
What if I have information?
If you have any documents and information including digital materials that relate to your experiences with New-Indy and the impact on your property and family—this includes medical records, well test results, pictures and video, appraisals, and similar documents, emails, text messages, and social media postings—please share them with us and keep a copy. You need to preserve that information and not destroy it.
How do I hire you?
You may sign up today by filling out the form on this page and we will contact you as quickly as possible to make arrangements to send you an electronic version of the retainer. Or you may call 803-599-2265
to make arrangements to execute the retainer or for any additional questions.
What about my family member, my neighbor, and my friends?
Please tell them to visit this page and complete the contact form and we will contact them as quickly as possible to obtain information from them make arrangements to send them an electronic version of the retainer. Or them may call 803-599-2265
so we may obtain information from them and make arrangements to execute the retainer or for any additional questions.
As early as November 2020, New Indy Containerboard in Catawba, South Carolina, has been polluting neighboring properties with noxious and harmful hydrogen sulfide emissions.
The paper mill, which is owned by The Kraft Group and Schwarz Partners LP, recently pivoted its production from white paper to containerboard. Since then, emissions of hydrogen sulfide have skyrocketed. The emissions and smell are a result of the production change as well as a change in how the mill processes waste that was made to increase profits. Byproducts that used to be sent to an incinerator are now sent to outdoor lagoons, which allow hydrogen sulfide, the pollutant behind the smell, to evaporate into the air.
New Indy is currently under orders from the EPA and the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) to reduce hydrogen sulfide levels. On May 13, the EPA sent the mill’s parent company a formal request requiring it to perform air monitoring in the surrounding communities. The EPA is also initiating its own air monitoring to reduce and prevent future public health and welfare risks associated with hydrogen sulfide emissions.
Residents in North Carolina and South Carolina are rightfully concerned about not only the putrid smell – DHEC has received more than 17,000 complaints from residents – but the health effects of exposure to hydrogen sulfide. Exposure to even low concentrations of hydrogen sulfide can result in serious health effects, such as irritation to the eyes, ears, and throat, difficulty breathing, as well as headaches, poor memory, tiredness, nausea, balance problems and other serious health conditions. The effects are heightened for those with preexisting conditions such as asthma or severe allergies. If you live or work in this area and are experiencing those types of symptoms, we encourage you to see a healthcare professional.
With our vast experience providing legal representation to the North and South Carolina communities and our dedication to environmental justice, we have achieved impactful results for our clients.* Our team is comprised of experienced attorneys, and we consult with practitioners in the environment, engineering, and health fields, and we have taken on and exposed corporate wrongdoers* – particularly in cases related to air and groundwater contamination – so that people can live without fear of pollution that can damage their health and way of life.