When a party buys or leases real estate, they may become liable for the cleanup of pre-existing environmental contamination, even if the new property owner/tenant did not release the contaminants.  That liability exists under the Federal Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act, also known as the Superfund law.  Most states also have similar laws

On March 21, 2013, the New Jersey Appellate Division upheld the validity of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s (DEP) controversial “Waiver Rule.”  The Waiver Rule generally allows the DEP to waive regulatory requirements under certain conditions.  The Waiver Rule was proposed by the DEP in March 2011, and was finalized in March 2012

On September 26, 2012, the New Jersey Supreme Court issued its decision in New Jersey Dep’t of Envtl. Prot. v. Ofra Dimant.  In this case, the Supreme Court was called upon to address the proofs needed to tie a discharger to a contaminated site in order to find that discharger liable for the contamination

A recent New Jersey Appellate Division case clarifies the process of valuing contaminated property in a condemnation action, and finds that where the cleanup has been completed, even if contamination remains at the property, the property owner is not required to escrow additional monies for any further cleanup.

In 2003, in the Suydam Investors case