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Litgo New Jersey, Inc. v. Martin

ELR Citation: 42 ELR 20092
Nos. No. 06-2891, (D.N.J., 04/16/2012) (Thompson, J.)

A district court held that a property owner is not entitled to attorney fees from the U.S. government in an underlying case in which the government was found liable under RCRA for trichloroethylene contamination at the site. The lower court held that the U.S. Army, Navy, and Air Force were liable as persons under RCRA, but it deferred ordering injunctive relief until it could hear further arguments on the matter. The property owner then dismissed its claim for injunctive relief against the U.S. defendants, reserving its right to seek litigation costs as a prevailing party. But because a final order has not been entered with respect to RCRA liability, and because the owner did not receive any injunctive relief on their RCRA claim, the property owner cannot be considered a prevailing party. The owner's request for fees, therefore, was denied.