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Residential Property Owners and Lenders

Residential Property Owners

In 1991, the EPA issued its Policy Towards Owners of Residential Properties at Superfund Sites (7/3/91) to relieve residential owners of the fear that they might be subject to an enforcement action involving contaminated property, even though they had not caused the contamination on the property.

Residential property owners who purchase contaminated property after January 11, 2002, can also take advantage of the statutory bona fide prospective purchaser (BFPP) protection by clarifying the type of pre-purchase investigation that a residential property owner must conduct, e.g., an inspection and title search.

Liability Protections for Financial Institutions

Congress enacted the “Asset Conservation, Lender Liability, and Deposit Insurance Protection Act of 1996,” which amended the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act's (CERCLA, commonly known as Superfund) secured creditor exemption under the owner/operator definition for lenders who hold ownership in a CERCLA facility primarily to protect their security interest in that facility, provided they do not “participate in the management of the facility.

More information on lender liability is available from the liability-lenders category in the Superfund enforcement policy and guidance database.

Other Superfund landowner liability protection information is available on the following webpages:

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