Lender Liability for Environmental Harm

4 April 2015
Describes & compares laws, principles & cases in U.S., Canada & Australia, focusing on responsibility for contaminated sites. Ownership, cleanup costs, shareholders, court decisions.

This paper will examine how the issues of lender liability for environmental harms are handled in the United States. Canada, and Australia. The main focus of the paper will be on the whether a lender can be held liable for environmental harms as an owner or person in control of a contaminated site. The principle way in which a lender can be held liable is by forcing it to pay for the cost of cleaning up a contaminated site. The main controversy in this area is whether the security interest held by a lender is a sufficient enough property interest to classify the lender as an owner or gives the lender enough control of the contaminated site. The section of this paper concerning the United States will focus solely upon federal law, namely CERCLA, since federal environmental law constitutes a fairly comprehensive…
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