Raiders of the Lost ARCO: Resolving the Partial Settlement Credit Issue in Private Cost Recovery and Contribution Claims Under CERCLA

66 Pages Posted: 15 Jan 2012  

Eric A. DeGroff

Regent University - School of Law

Date Written: 2000

Abstract

This article addresses the issue of partial settlement credit in private CERCLA litigation -- a matter about which the federal courts remain divided. The author addresses the merits of, and rationale for, both the UCFA's proportionate share approach and the UCATA's dollar reduction rule.

Rather than determine the approach to partial settlement credit on the basis of the plaintiff's identity (government versus private), the author suggests that the nature of the claim should control the choice of law.

Application of the UCATA to all ยง 107 cost recovery claims, whether government-initiated or private, would better comport with CERCLA's statutory scheme, better effectuate Congress's intent to fill CERCLA's statutory gaps by reference to common law principles, better promote timely cleanup and voluntary settlement, and be more principled. Such an approach was recommended by Judge Wagner in the ARCO litigation, and thus would not be entirely without precedent.

Keywords: hazardous waste, Superfund, private cost recovery, claims settlement

JEL Classification: I28, K23, K32, K41

Suggested Citation

DeGroff, Eric A., Raiders of the Lost ARCO: Resolving the Partial Settlement Credit Issue in Private Cost Recovery and Contribution Claims Under CERCLA (2000). NYU Environmental Law Journal, Vol. 8, No. 2, p. 332, 2000. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1985283

Eric A. DeGroff (Contact Author)

Regent University - School of Law ( email )

1000 Regent University Drive
Virginia Beach, VA 23464
United States

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