Attorneys Advising Businesses And Real Estate Investors Regarding Environmental Site Assessments
A real estate purchaser, developer or seller must undertake a Phase I (and sometimes a Phase II) environmental site assessment (ESA) before purchasing a property; they’re doing it not because “the bank says we have to.” A Phase I ESA is an essential element of obtaining a bona fide protective purchaser (BFPP) protection under the federal Superfund Act. Determining if there are particular environmental risks associated with a property, and then resolving how to remedy them, is an essential part of the process. The attorneys of Periconi, LLC, advise their New York and out-of-state clients requiring either type of assessment for commercial and industrial properties, starting with choosing the right environmental consultant for the job:
A Phase I environmental site assessment looks into the history of a property. The resulting report provides a detailed summary of the environmental history of the property and findings about potential Recognize environmental conditions (RECs). The report may also include preliminary information related to whether contamination is likely and if site cleanup might be required. Clients represented by Periconi, LLC, rely on the firm’s assessment, from review of the RECS, to what kind of Phase II environmental site assessment is required as part of the due diligence process and when, i.e., whether it can be deferred until after closing on the purchase, a crucial decision.
A Phase II environmental site assessment includes physical testing to identify specific hazards such as abandoned fuel storage tanks and contaminated soil, soil vapor and groundwater. A Phase II ESA will usually involve a combination of testing of soil, soil vapor (air) and groundwater. It is tailor-made for the particular property and particular RECs – it is not a one-size-fits-all effort, as we explain to our clients.
Businesses and parties for commercial real estate transactions look to Periconi, LLC, for guidance through these processes. Lawyers of the firm help clients and their consultants arrange for, document and respond to ESAs, and deploy the results in negotiations with sellers; or if we are representing sellers, how to interpret the buyer’s Phase I or Phase II ESA. Owning, operating, buying, selling or leasing property requires understanding and addressing liability concerns and plans for remediation as needed. The purchaser of a property typically seeks legal representation to ensure thorough analysis and conduct negotiations. These processes will cover environmental provisions and cost allocations in the terms of a buy-sell contract. The counseling does not stop after the transaction: to maintain the BFPP protection of the federal Superfund Act, owners of property must undertake the requisite due care requirements to not lose the BFPP protection.
Experienced environmental law attorneys at Periconi, LLC, work with reputable consultants to ensure that federal all appropriate inquiry (AAI) requirements are met so that prospective buyers of contaminated properties are protected from liability as reasonably possible. The firm also helps clients select and communicate with experienced and capable environmental consultants. Protecting clients from liability by assisting with structuring deals involving environmentally complex properties are a large part of the law practice at Periconi, LLC.