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"Innocent landowner" defense

City of Banning v. Dureau

ELR Case

A district court held that the owner of a vacant property is liable under CERCLA for the release of hazardous waste intentionally caused by trespassers. The owner, who left oil drums on the property, claimed she was entitled to the...

Saline River Properties, LLC, v. Johnson Controls, Inc.

ELR Case

A district court held that a developer may be liable under CERCLA for response costs the former owner of contaminated property incurred at the site. The developer, who now owns the site, filed suit against the former owner to enforce...

Advanced Tech. Corp. v. Eliskim, Inc.

ELR Case

The court denies a corporation's motion to reconsider a ruling that disputed issues of material fact exist as to whether the corporation's neighbor can claim an innocent landowner defense, which would allow the neighbor to pursue a...

Axel Johnson, Inc. v. Carroll Carolina Oil Co.

ELR Case

The court holds that the former owner and operator of a refinery may not bring cost recovery or contribution actions under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) against the subsequent and...

Grand St. Artists v. General Elec. Co.

ELR Case

The court holds that individual condominium owners may not assert the innocent landowner defense in their Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) action against the property's former owners. The...

Bedford Affiliates v. Sills

ELR Case

The court holds that a landowner that is a potentially responsible party (PRP) under Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) § 107(a) cannot maintain a § 107(a) action against another PRP...

Escaping CERCLA Liability: The Interim Owner Passive Migration Defense Gains Circuit Recognition

ELR Article

Editors' Summary: This Article addresses CERCLA's language and structure as it pertains to the liability of interim landowners for passive migration of hazardous substances. The author argues that CERCLA's language, structure, and...

Raytheon Co. v. McGraw-Edison Co.

ELR Case

The court holds that a purchaser of environmentally contaminated property is not precluded from bringing Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA)...

Due and Don't Care Under CERCLA: An Emerging Standard for Current Owners

ELR Article

Editors' Summary: CERCLA § 107 contains a third-party affirmative defense provision for owners of hazardous waste sites who exercised due care. Despite the abundance of CERCLA litigation, until recently no clear understanding of...

Sliding Scale or Slippery Slope: The New ASTM's Standard Practices for Environmental Site Assessments

ELR Article

The twentieth-century equivalent of the Holy Grail — at least in U.S. environmental law — is the status of "innocent landowner" under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act1 (...