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Storage tank cases often involve unique factual, technical and legal issues, including complex hydrogeological factors, and turn on both statutory presumptions and contract interpretation.   We have handled numerous cases involving storage tanks, including cases involving abandoned tanks left behind decades earlier by prior owners, as well as tanks that have been improperly removed.  We are also regularly involved in disputes between current and prior property owners, adjacent landowners, landlords and tenants, and government regulators.  In addition, we represent clients in filing and pursuing claims with the Pennsylvania Underground Storage Tank Indemnification Fund (“USTIF”) and the New Jersey Petroleum Underground Storage Tank Remediation, Upgrade and Closure Fund.

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Our experience involving storage tank litigation includes the following matters:

  • Representing a client in one of the leading cases with a reported decision involving Pennsylvania's statutory presumption of liability under the Pennsylvania Storage Tank and Spill Prevention Act. (Wack v. Farmland Industries, Inc., 744 A.2d 265 (Pa. Super. Ct. 1999)).
  • Successfully litigating issues of first impression for cost recovery under the Pennsylvania Storage Tank and Spill Prevention Act.
  • Representing a Fortune 100 client with maintenance facilities in New Jersey in two separate cases involving alleged contamination from storage tanks. One of these cases involved the retention of groundwater experts and a series of investigations of the numerous sites involved in the case. The other case involved gathering evidence of tank usage dating back to the 1950s and historical aerial photography.
  • Representing a national gasoline retailer in administrative hearings to secure coverage from the Pennsylvania Underground Storage Tank Indemnification Fund.
  • Recovering funds for current property owners from prior owners of sites where tanks associated with historical operations are at issue. In one such case, we recovered the full amount of the claim without filing suit and in another case reached a mutually acceptable determination of responsibility without filing suit.
  • Defending a distributor of home heating oil in litigation resulting from releases of heating oil during delivery events.
  • Representing a Pennsylvania college in federal court litigation instituted by neighboring property owner in asserting liability for remediation and damages in connection with leaking underground storage tanks.
  • Representing a client in tank litigation who was not the owner of a tank, but was allegedly responsible for ancillary equipment that was claimed to have failed, resulting in a release. This representation was successfully resolved for the client years before the case concluded for many of the other parties.
  • Successfully recovering cleanup costs against a prior property owner on behalf of a client who owned property where tanks had been in use decades earlier and then abandoned.
  • Obtaining reversal of multiple coverage denials before USTIF.

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