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Environmental Cleanup Cost Recovery
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New Jersey Voters to Decide Important State Constitutional Amendment concerning the Environment

On Tuesday, November 7, 2017, New Jersey voters will be asked to decide on a state constitutional amendment regarding the use of natural resource damages collected by the State in environmental contamination cases. New Jersey has the authority to collect damages for restoration of natural resources under the New Jersey Water Pollution Control Act, N.J.S.A. Read More

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Laches to defeat a private party contribution claim under the Spill Act?

In 2015, the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled that private party contribution claims under the New Jersey Spill Compensation and Control Act (the “Spill Act”) are not time barred by a statute of limitations. See Morristown Associates v. Grant Oil Co., 220 N.J. 360 (2015).  Accordingly, private claims for contribution pursuant to the Spill Act Read More

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When Remediation Goes Wrong: Appellate Division Says Remedial Efforts May Constitute Evidence Spoliation

In 18-01 Pollitt Drive, LLC v. Engel, the Appellate Division held that the discard of piping, a sump pit, and concrete flooring during remediation constitutes spoliation of material, physical evidence. Docket No. A-4833-13T3 (App. Div. Oct. 31, 2016).  Spoliation of evidence occurs when a litigant has “hidden, destroyed, or lost relevant evidence and thereby impaired Read More

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Appellate Division Sheds Light on Procedural Requirements for Certain Environmental Claims

A recent Appellate Division case shed some light on certain procedural requirements for environmental claims. In Bradley v. Kovelesky, et al., Docket No.: A-0423-14T4, the claims before the court pertained to an 8.3 acre property in Middletown Township. Lawrence Carton, deceased June 2007, purchased the property January 2006. Carton set out to build a residence Read More

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The Path(way) to Reinvestigation: MassDEP Revisits Closed TCE Sites

The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (“MassDEP”) recently proposed to reopen closed waste sites based on available data that suggests levels of trichloroethylene (“TCE”) may exceed current United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) toxicity values.  While the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (“NJDEP”) has not yet proposed a similar endeavor, it is worth following Read More

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No Time Limit to Sue for Environmental Cleanup Costs in New Jersey

No Statute of Limitations Applies to Private Spill Act Claims The regulated community breathed a collective sigh of relief when New Jersey’s highest court released its decision today in Morristown Associates v. Grant Oil Co., — NJ — (2015), where it held that the state’s general six-year statute of limitations is not applicable to private “contribution” lawsuits Read More

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Oil Company Not Liable to Neighbor for Leaking Underground Tanks

Gasoline Station Owner Not Liable for Damage to Neighbor Who Did Not Properly Allege Harm A property owner whose investment property was contaminated by a leaking gasoline station next door had his property damage case dismissed because he failed to completely allege all of his damages at the trial court. The case, Favorito v. Puritan Read More

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NJ Supreme Court to Hear Argument in Environmental Spill Case on Oct. 6

NJ High Court to Decide if 6 Year Statute of Limitation Applies to Environmental Cleanup Cost Recovery Claim Under the Spill Act On October 6, 2014, the Supreme Court of New Jersey will be hearing oral argument in Morristown Assoc. v Grant Oil Co., 432 N.J.Super 287 (App. Div. 2013), a case involving the statute Read More

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NJ Supreme Court: Environmental Litigation Over Cleanup Cost Allocation May Proceed

 Sets New Environmental Law Precedent New Jersey’s highest court has ruled that in private contribution claims arising under the Spill Act, “a party determined to be a discharger and held responsible for the cost of cleanup by the DEP is entitled to bring a contribution claim against other potentially responsible parties before the final tally Read More

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U.S. District Court Allows NJ Superfund Site Suit to Proceed

Earlier this month, U.S. District Court Judge Michael Shipp ruled that lead smelting company NL Industries (formerly National Lead) may maintain an action against over two dozen defendants for contribution relating to the clean-up of the Raritan Bay Slag Superfund site. The site in question includes the Laurence Harbor seawall adjacent to Waterfront Park in Read More

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Recent Blog Posts

Terranova vs. General Electric Pension Trust: Clarifying (or complicating) defenses under the Spill Act

On January 4, 2019, the New Jersey Appellate Division handed down a decision in Terranova vs. General Electric Pension Trust, Docket No. A-5699-16T3 (hereinafter, “Terranova”). In Terranova, The New Jersey
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Terranova vs. General Electric Pension Trust: Clarifying (or complicating) defenses under the Spill Act

NJ Supreme Court Sees Standing in Tax Lienholders to Challenge Municipal Approval

On August 2, 2018, New Jersey’s Supreme Court held that a holder of a municipal tax lien may have standing to challenge a local planning board’s approval for a neighboring
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NJ Supreme Court Sees Standing in Tax Lienholders to Challenge Municipal Approval

The Downside to Higher Ground: Appellate Division affirms finding of a townhome owner’s negligence and responsibility for water damage to a below unit caused by a prolonged leaking washing machine hose

On August 1, 2018, the Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division ruled in favor of plaintiff in the matter captioned Joseph S. D’Elia v. Joyce Campisi and Liberty Mutual
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The Downside to Higher Ground: Appellate Division affirms finding of a townhome owner’s negligence and responsibility for water damage to a below unit caused by a prolonged leaking washing machine hose

United States Supreme Court Tackles Key Clean Water Act Judicial Review Issue

National Association of Manufacturers v. Department of Defense, et al. 583 U.S. ____ (2018) Decided January 22, 2018 Since the passing of the Clean Water Act in 1972, the definition of “the waters
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United States Supreme Court Tackles Key Clean Water Act Judicial Review Issue

In the media

  • Gulf Coast Town Center facing foreclosure

    Naples Daily News, September 16, 2015

    Wells Fargo filed a lawsuit Sept. 8 against an affiliate of CBL & Associates, the owners of the decadeold, 1.2 million-square-foot mall in south Fort Myers for a $190.9 million unpaid loan. The center has 94 stores on 204 acres, with such anchors as Super Target, Belk, Best Buy, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Marshalls and Costco...

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  • Town liable for private company's leaking underground tanks, court rules

    NJ.com Jul 26, 2017

    CRANFORD -- A couple that owned a businesses in town and became sick from leaking underground tanks owned by an adjacent business can sue the township for damages because the tanks were partially ...

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