Roughly half of our work is on sites driven by state environmental laws and enforcement agencies. State sites typically involve 1 to 10 parties, and tens of thousands to several million dollars. Often they involve underground storage tanks (USTs) or aboveground storage tanks (ASTs) containing petroleum or other hazardous substances. The background of these sites varies widely, including present and former gas stations, dry cleaners, and residential fuel oil tanks. We have nearly 30 years of experience in responding to legal problems of this nature.
Our clients include individuals and businesses that own or operate contaminated property. Often the potentially liable parties did not know about the contamination, which may have been caused years earlier by a prior or adjacent owner. They may first learn of the problem when they go to sell their property, or when the contamination comes to the attention of the state enforcement agency. In these situations the present owner may or may not be liable, but they nearly always have a challenging legal problem.
State environmental cleanup issues often come up during the purchase or sale of real estate. If property is contaminated, the owner, including a new owner, is potentially liable for the cost of cleanup, regardless of whether they had any connection to the source of the contamination. In these situations, it is important to have the help of a lawyer who has a focused environmental law practice. We have extensive experience in this area, representing and advising purchasers, sellers and lenders in transactions involving potentially contaminated real estate.
Some examples of common state enforcement situations that our clients face include:
Davis Law Office, PLLC