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Settling CERCLA Cases: Executing an Effective Strategy

Resolving CERCLA Litigation and Minimizing the Threat of Future RCRA Citizen Suits and CERCLA 107 Claims

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Thursday, March 26, 2020

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE course will provide guidance to counsel for parties of CERCLA litigation on settlement strategies and implications. The panel will examine potential future claims the parties may face, and the need for careful consideration when determining with whom to settle and the order in which to settle. The panel will offer best practices for executing the settlement strategy.


CERCLA litigation typically involves numerous players. When seeking to settle CERCLA cases, the CERCLA plaintiff must consider with whom it will settle, the standard that will apply to the settlement, and what protection it will receive from future claims. Careful navigation of these issues is necessary to minimize the likelihood of further litigation and protect the plaintiff's ability to seek contribution from other parties.

When settling CERCLA cases, many PRPs focus on the risk of future CERCLA 107 or state law claims. However, there is also a risk that parties may file a RCRA citizen suit. There is conflicting law on this--some cases hold that such claims are not barred unless specific RCRA statutory criteria are met. Others hold the claims are barred as disguised contribution claims, and yet others hold that such claims may be barred for other reasons.

Counsel to parties settling CERCLA litigation must establish and carefully implement a settlement strategy that adequately protects it from future claims.

Listen as our panel of experts examines CERCLA settlement strategy and the implications of settlement. The panel will discuss what steps counsel can take to minimize the threat of future RCRA citizen suits and CERCLA 107 claims and ensure the ability to seek contribution from other PRPs. The panel will offer best practices for executing the settlement strategy.



  1. CERCLA settlement strategy
  2. Implications of the settlement
    1. RCRA citizen suits
    2. CERCLA 107 claims
    3. Contribution from other PRPs
  3. Best practices for execution of settlement


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What factors should plaintiffs consider when determining with whom to settle?
  • What hurdles can settlement order present for contribution claims?
  • What steps can counsel take when settling CERCLA litigation to reduce the likelihood of future claims?


Bloomfield, Thomas
Thomas A. Bloomfield

Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell

Mr. Bloomfield advises public and private clients on complex environmental disputes involving administrative law,...  |  Read More

Lippard, Benjamin
Benjamin S. Lippard

Vinson & Elkins

Mr. Lippard represents clients in a wide variety of environmental matters, including civil litigation, civil and...  |  Read More

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