If you have a Superfund cleanup obligation, you may want to collect on insurance (if you have any) and also to seek contribution from others responsible for the Site. What happens to the contribution claim when you collect on the insurance? In most Superfund matters, the parties have simply ignored insurance recoveries. However, in those few cases where the question has been raised in litigation, the courts have agreed that the collateral source rule — the rule that insurance should be ignored in determining the amount of a tort recovery — does not apply to a contribution claim under the Comprehensive Environmental, Response, Compensation and Liability Act. But from there confusion sets in. Is there no set off, an equitable consideration of insurance recoveries in allocating costs, a mechanical dollar-for-dollar set off, or something else? That is the topic of my column this month in the Pennsylvania Law Weekly.
Read Insurance Recoveries and Superfund Contribution Claims, 37 Pa. L. Weekly 220 (Mar. 11, 2014), by clicking here.