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LWD PRP Group v. Alcan Corp.

ELR Citation: 45 ELR 20016
Nos. 14-5730, (6th Cir., 01/14/2015)

The Sixth Circuit held that the three-year statute of limitations for contribution actions brought after an administrative settlement to perform a removal action begins running when the settlement becomes effective, not when the removal action is completed. In this case, the plaintiff—a group of PRPs that entered into a settlement agreement with EPA—sought reimbursement for cleanup costs it incurred at a Superfund site in Calvert City, Kentucky. It claimed that the limitations period runs from the completion of the removal action. The lower court agreed and denied the defendant company's motion to dismiss. But in Hobart Corp. v. Waste Management of Ohio, Inc., 758 F.3d 757 (6th Cir. 2014), the court held that a contribution action brought after an administrative settlement with the United States or a state must be filed within three years of the settlement’s effective date. Nothing distinguishes this case from the court's reasoning in Hobart. The lower court, therefore, should have granted the defendant company's motion to dismiss.