Effective November 2006, buyers of commercial real estate have new liability protections against hazardous substances contamination
on their property-even if they know about it at the time of purchase-provided they conduct all required research under the
Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) new All Appropriate Inquiries Final Rule. Commercial Landowner CERCLA Liability Protection
provides a comprehensive examination of the new EPA Final Rule and compares the new EPA rule to the previous Phase I All Appropriate
Inquiry Standard Practice established by ASTM. Prior to EPA's All Appropriate Inquiries Final Rule, the well-established
ASTM Phase I Standard Practice provided the only guidance for conducting environmental site assessments for real estate properties.
Now, in conjunction with the EPA, ASTM has revised its standard to conform to the new EPA Final Rule. In addition to providing
two new protections, the "Contiguous Property Owner" and "Bona Fide Prospective Purchaser," the new All Appropriate Inquiries
Final Rule requires new protocols not previously required by the ASTM standard, including interviewing previous owners of
the property; conducting a visual inspection of adjoining properties; and reviewing local government records, institutional
and engineering controls, and environmental cleanup liens. Commercial Landowner CERCLA Liability Protection provides readers
with an easy-to-use reference on such topics as the regulatory background of the rule, benefits and incentives that affect
real estate buyers, components and requirements of the new All Appropriate Inquiries Final Rule, requirements and guidelines
for conducting historical and government research on a property, and distinctions between the EPA All Appropriate Inquiries
Final Rule and the ASTM Phase I Environmental Site Assessment.