Monday, June 1, 2009

Friedland v. TIC-The Industrial Co.

May 29: In the U.S. Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit, Case No. 08-1042. Plaintiff-appellant Robert M. Friedland filed the contribution action pursuant to the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) § 113(f), against defendants appellees, The Industrial Company (TIC) and GeoSyntec Consultants Inc. (GeoSyntec). The district court entered summary judgment in favor of the defendants-appellees based on its determination that Friedland already recouped all of his recoverable costs from other entities and therefore has no damages to recover in this case. Friedland appealed the decision and the Appeals Court affirmed the district court decision.

The Appeals Court concluded, "The district court correctly concluded that the collateral source rule does not apply in this CERCLA contribution action. The court also properly determined that the alleged injury and damages in this lawsuit are the same as those addressed in the USF&G and Travelers settlements. We therefore affirm the entry of summary judgment against Mr. Friedland. We grant the appellees’ motion to file their response brief under seal and Mr. Friedland’s motion to file his reply brief under seal."

Access the complete opinion (
click here).