Property Damages

LGWM’s Environmental Group represents clients in many types of property damage cases. The lawyers in LGWM’s Environmental Group have extensive experience in developing highly technical defense strategies that typically involve multiple experts and consultants. Defending environmental property damage claims requires an attorney that is educated and experienced with cases involving federal environmental statutes, including the Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act, and Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, as well as state tort laws designed to aid citizens in establishing property damage as a result of environmental emissions which are otherwise difficult to prove.

The Environmental Practice Group at LGWM is highly skilled and experienced in defending environmental property damage cases. Our attorneys have defended claims related to property damage due to various hazardous materials.

Cases of Note

  • We represented a synthetic fuel facility against claims that coal dust residue was allowed to migrate off-site, causing property damage. We successfully argued there was no evidence Defendant allowed coal dust to migrate off-site. After establishing these facts, we were able to negotiate a reasonable settlement and dismissal of all claims against Defendant.
  • We defended an environmental remediation contractor involved in the cleanup of a spill of Mercaptan. Over 500 residential Plaintiffs claimed the spill caused contaminants from the site to migrate to groundwater, creating a noxious odor that diminished the value of their property. We successfully resolved the case for the environmental contractor by using expert testimony to establish no liability existed.
  • We represented a general contractor in an industrial construction case in which Plaintiff landowners claimed property damages as a result of the subcontractors’ use of heavy construction equipment during the construction. The case involved extensive property damages claimed by Plaintiffs and numerous contractual indemnification claims between various defendants and non-parties.
  • We represented an engineering and construction firm in a multi-Plaintiff case wherein Plaintiffs claimed our client solicited them to participate in cleanup of the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, and Plaintiffs’ vessels were contaminated as a result of exposure to oil spill. We argued our client was entitled to a defense and indemnification from the company that hired our client to solicit volunteers to participate in the cleanup. We were able to successfully obtain a defense and indemnification on behalf of our client.
  • We represented a Construction Program Management Company in a multi-Plaintiff lawsuit in which Plaintiffs claimed dust from a construction site caused diminution in value of their property. We argued our client was not responsible for the work that allegedly caused Plaintiffs’ injuries.
  • We represented a contractor in a multi-plaintiff lawsuit in which Plaintiffs alleged the contractor improperly constructed a landfill and negligently deposited coal fly ash at the landfill that contaminated the surrounding property. Plaintiffs claimed diminished property value and the loss of enjoyment and use of their homes. We were able to settle the claims for less than the cost of defense.
  • We represented the owner and operator of a regulated water and wastewater system in a multi-plaintiff suit. Plaintiffs alleged our client allowed millions of gallons of raw and untreated sewage to discharge from a sewer treatment facility into a creek running along Plaintiffs’ residences, causing property damage. We argued the statute of limitations barred Plaintiffs’ claims and the discharge was not attributable to our client’s actions. We were able to successfully resolve Plaintiffs’ claims.
  • We represented a producer of synthetic fibers in a class action complaint. Plaintiffs alleged our client polluted farm land, grass lands, and water supplies with perfluorooctanioc acid, perfluorooctane sulfonate, and other perfluorochemicals by contributing these chemicals to waste sludge deposited onto the Plaintiffs’ properties. We argued our client did not owe any duty to Plaintiffs, but even if our client did owe a duty, the chemicals released did not cause the property damage suffered by the Plaintiffs.
  • We represented an environmental action contractor retained to clean up underground petroleum and diesel tank releases in an action brought by multiple nearby land owners. Plaintiffs argued the remedial technology utilized by the contractor volatized dangerous chemicals and allowed them to be dispersed into the air. We filed summary judgment and successfully negotiated a nominal settlement to resolve Plaintiffs’ claims.
  • We represented an industrial facility in a multi-Plaintiff case wherein Plaintiffs claimed our client emitted toxic materials causing damage to Plaintiffs’ property. We successfully resolved the case by establishing no emission exceedances of the facility’s operating permits had occurred and any exceedances of the operating parameters were de minimis in nature.