The first Statement of Claims over defective blocks has been served in the High Court this afternoon.
The legal claim was issued by Coleman Solicitors on behalf of Malin Head couple Liam and Grainne Doherty.
The couple, who moved into their home at Urblereagh in 2008
The claim was issued to the three defendants in the case Cassidy Brothers Concrete Products Limited, Donegal County Council and the National Standards Authority of Ireland.
The lengthy statement of claims, which stretches to some 27 pages, outlines the couple’s case against each named defendant.
The couple, both teachers, are now seeking damages for alleged breach of contract, negligence and breach of duty.
In their case, the Ó Dochartaighs allege defective blocks were supplied by Cassidy Brothers from its quarry at Gransha, Co Donegal.
The company has previously insisted its masonry blocks always met all required standards at point of manufacture, that it was shocked when damage emerged in properties and that it acted honestly and in good faith at all times in its manufacturing processes.
The council and the NSAI are included as co-defendants in their capacity as bodies responsible for the provision and implementation of building product standards.
The case is expected to be the first of ten ‘pathfinder’ cases which will come before the High Court seeking compensation as a result of the damage caused by mica.
A total of 1,500 people have signed up with Coleman Legal to take legal cases against the three defendants.
Adrian Sheridan, a Dubai-based businessman who is from Inishowen, is part-financing the test case.
He has seen first-hand the devastation caused by MICA in his home county and says this is why he wanted to support the claim.
He said “The main I have supported the case is because it manifested itself in Donegal before any other county. So being a Donegal man I have witnessed first hand what has happened to people’s homes.
“Houses are literally continue to deteriorate very rapidly as a result of these defective blocks being placed on the market.
“I know many of these innocent people who bought these blocks in good faith and built homes with them and have mortgages of 20 or 30 years left on them.
“They were built with blocks which had little certification or light touch regulation or no regulation ins some place at all,” he said.
Mr Sheridan added that they have spent the last year developing a statement of claim and have noted 100 breaches.
“We have spent last year going through this with international experts, lawyers, barristers and senior counsel to develop the statement of claims. It is based on international experts opinions.
“Their opinion is that the three defendants have approximately one hundred breaches or either EU laws, acts or regulations for things they did or neglected to do,” he added.
Mr Sheridan also noted that the bulk of those included in the 1,500 people who have launched writs with Coleman Legal to claim the shortfall of payment are primary homeowners.
However, he stressed there are also many more who have not yet become part of the action including business owners and holiday home owners whose properties also have MICA.