Biggest leaky homes lawsuit in history on hold

Author
John Weekes, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Tue, 3 Aug 2021, 1:42PM
(Photo / NZ Herald)
(Photo / NZ Herald)

Biggest leaky homes lawsuit in history on hold

Author
John Weekes, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Tue, 3 Aug 2021, 1:42PM

The biggest leaky homes lawsuit in New Zealand history is on hold.

The enormous $220 million class action at the High Court in Auckland was expected to last for several more weeks.

But the case involving homeowners taking on the James Hardie group of companies has disappeared from public court listings.

"The matter has been adjourned by agreement to allow some discussions to take place," said Jack Hodder QC, who represented the James Hardie entities.

Adina Thorn, who represented homeowners, said today she was unable to comment.

Nobody confirmed if the matter has been settled out of court. The High Court has been approached for more information.

The civil proceeding before Justice Christian Whata started in May and was expected to continue until at least September.

The lawsuit focused on James Hardie's Harditex monolithic cladding system.

People suing the James Hardie group claimed the cement and fibre cladding system caused problems including damp, mould and rot in their houses.

Simon Hughes QC, a lawyer for the plaintiffs, told the court Harditex was not properly tested for the New Zealand conditions.

But James Hardie said shoddy workmanship was to blame for many of the alleged problems.

Hodder previously told the court Harditex was introduced after appropriately designed and best practice testing.

"Properly installed, Harditex drains and dries well."

Harditex was withdrawn from the market in 2005.