Subchapter I Hazardous Substances Releases, Liability, Compensation
Subchapter III Miscellaneous Provisions
Subchapter IV Pollution Insurance

Terms Used In U.S. Code > Title 42 > Chapter 103 - Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability

  • act of God: means an unanticipated grave natural disaster or other natural phenomenon of an exceptional, inevitable, and irresistible character, the effects of which could not have been prevented or avoided by the exercise of due care or foresight. See 42 USC 9601
  • Administrator: means the Administrator of the United States Environmental Protection Agency. See 42 USC 9601
  • affiliate: has the meaning of that term provided in the definition of "small business concern" in regulations promulgated by the Small Business Administration in accordance with the Small Business Act (15 U. See 42 USC 9607
  • Agreement: means a Conservation Agreement provided for in section 2431g of this title. See 22 USC 2431a
  • alternative water supplies: includes , but is not limited to, drinking water and household water supplies. See 42 USC 9601
  • Amendment: A proposal to alter the text of a pending bill or other measure by striking out some of it, by inserting new language, or both. Before an amendment becomes part of the measure, thelegislature must agree to it.
  • Appeal: A request made after a trial, asking another court (usually the court of appeals) to decide whether the trial was conducted properly. To make such a request is "to appeal" or "to take an appeal." One who appeals is called the appellant.
  • appropriate congressional committees: means --

    (A) the Committee on International Relations and the Committee on Appropriations of the House of Representatives. See 22 USC 2431a

  • Arrest: Taking physical custody of a person by lawful authority.
  • Assets: (1) The property comprising the estate of a deceased person, or (2) the property in a trust account.
  • Bankruptcy: Refers to statutes and judicial proceedings involving persons or businesses that cannot pay their debts and seek the assistance of the court in getting a fresh start. Under the protection of the bankruptcy court, debtors may discharge their debts, perhaps by paying a portion of each debt. Bankruptcy judges preside over these proceedings.
  • Beneficiary: A person who is entitled to receive the benefits or proceeds of a will, trust, insurance policy, retirement plan, annuity, or other contract. Source: OCC
  • beneficiary country: means an eligible country with respect to which the authority of section 2431d(a)(1) of this title, section 2431e(a)(1) of this title, or paragraph (1) or (2) of section 2431f(a) of this title is exercised. See 22 USC 2431a
  • Bequest: Property gifted by will.
  • bona fide prospective purchaser: means , with respect to a facility--

    (i) a person who--

    (I) acquires ownership of the facility after January 11, 2002. See 42 USC 9601

  • brownfield site: includes a site that--

    (i) meets the definition of "brownfield site" under subparagraphs (A) through (C). See 42 USC 9601

  • claim: means a demand in writing for a sum certain. See 42 USC 9601
  • claimant: means any person who presents a claim for compensation under this chapter. See 42 USC 9601
  • Common law: The legal system that originated in England and is now in use in the United States. It is based on judicial decisions rather than legislative action.
  • Complaint: A written statement by the plaintiff stating the wrongs allegedly committed by the defendant.
  • Concurrent resolution: A legislative measure, designated "S. Con. Res." and numbered consecutively upon introduction, generally employed to address the sentiments of both chambers, to deal with issues or matters affecting both houses, such as a concurrent budget resolution, or to create a temporary joint committee. Concurrent resolutions are not submitted to the President/Governor and thus do not have the force of law.
  • Continuance: Putting off of a hearing ot trial until a later time.
  • Conviction: A judgement of guilt against a criminal defendant.
  • county: includes a parish, or any other equivalent subdivision of a State or Territory of the United States. See 1 USC 2
  • Damages: Money paid by defendants to successful plaintiffs in civil cases to compensate the plaintiffs for their injuries.
  • damages: means damages for injury or loss of natural resources as set forth in section 9607(a) or 9611(b) of this title. See 42 USC 9601
  • Deed: The legal instrument used to transfer title in real property from one person to another.
  • Defendant: In a civil suit, the person complained against; in a criminal case, the person accused of the crime.
  • Discovery: Lawyers' examination, before trial, of facts and documents in possession of the opponents to help the lawyers prepare for trial.
  • Docket: A log containing brief entries of court proceedings.
  • drinking water supply: means any raw or finished water source that is or may be used by a public water system (as defined in the Safe Drinking Water Act [42 U. See 42 USC 9601
  • eligible response site: includes --

    (i) notwithstanding paragraph (39)(B)(ix), a portion of a facility, for which portion assistance for response activity has been obtained under subtitle I of the Solid Waste Disposal Act (42 U. See 42 USC 9601

  • environment: means (A) the navigable waters, the waters of the contiguous zone, and the ocean waters of which the natural resources are under the exclusive management authority of the United States under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act [16 U. See 42 USC 9601
  • Escheat: Reversion of real or personal property to the state when 1) a person dies without leaving a will and has no heirs, or 2) when the property (such as a bank account) has been inactive for a certain period of time. Source: OCC
  • Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
  • Executor: A male person named in a will to carry out the decedent
  • extension of credit: includes a lease finance transaction--

    (I) in which the lessor does not initially select the leased vessel or facility and does not during the lease term control the daily operations or maintenance of the vessel or facility. See 42 USC 9601

  • facility: means (A) any building, structure, installation, equipment, pipe or pipeline (including any pipe into a sewer or publicly owned treatment works), well, pit, pond, lagoon, impoundment, ditch, landfill, storage container, motor vehicle, rolling stock, or aircraft, or (B) any site or area where a hazardous substance has been deposited, stored, disposed of, or placed, or otherwise come to be located. See 42 USC 9601
  • Facility: means the Conservation Facility established in the Department of the Treasury by section 2431b of this title. See 22 USC 2431a
  • Fair market value: The price at which an asset would change hands in a transaction between a willing, informed buyer and a willing, informed seller.
  • federally permitted release: means (A) discharges in compliance with a permit under section 402 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act [33 U. See 42 USC 9601
  • Fiduciary: A trustee, executor, or administrator.
  • fiduciary capacity: means the capacity of a person in holding title to a vessel or facility, or otherwise having control of or an interest in the vessel or facility, pursuant to the exercise of the responsibilities of the person as a fiduciary. See 42 USC 9607
  • Forbearance: A means of handling a delinquent loan. A
  • Foreclosure: A legal process in which property that is collateral or security for a loan may be sold to help repay the loan when the loan is in default. Source: OCC
  • Fund: means a Conservation Fund provided for in section 2431h of this title. See 22 USC 2431a
  • ground water: means water in a saturated zone or stratum beneath the surface of land or water. See 42 USC 9601
  • Guarantor: A party who agrees to be responsible for the payment of another party's debts should that party default. Source: OCC
  • guarantor: means any person, other than the owner or operator, who provides evidence of financial responsibility for an owner or operator under this chapter. See 42 USC 9601
  • Guardian: A person legally empowered and charged with the duty of taking care of and managing the property of another person who because of age, intellect, or health, is incapable of managing his (her) own affairs.
  • hazardous substance: means (A) any substance designated pursuant to section 311(b)(2)(A) of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act [33 U. See 42 USC 9601
  • incineration vessel: means any vessel which carries hazardous substances for the purpose of incineration of such substances, so long as such substances or residues of such substances are on board. See 42 USC 9601
  • Indemnification: In general, a collateral contract or assurance under which one person agrees to secure another person against either anticipated financial losses or potential adverse legal consequences. Source: FDIC
  • Indian tribe: means any Indian tribe, band, nation, or other organized group or community, including any Alaska Native village but not including any Alaska Native regional or village corporation, which is recognized as eligible for the special programs and services provided by the United States to Indians because of their status as Indians. See 42 USC 9601
  • individual: shall include every infant member of the species homo sapiens who is born alive at any stage of development. See 1 USC 8
  • Injunction: An order of the court prohibiting (or compelling) the performance of a specific act to prevent irreparable damage or injury.
  • insurance: means primary insurance, excess insurance, reinsurance, surplus lines insurance, and any other arrangement for shifting and distributing risk which is determined to be insurance under applicable State or Federal law. See 42 USC 9671
  • Interest rate: The amount paid by a borrower to a lender in exchange for the use of the lender's money for a certain period of time. Interest is paid on loans or on debt instruments, such as notes or bonds, either at regular intervals or as part of a lump sum payment when the issue matures. Source: OCC
  • Joint resolution: A legislative measure which requires the approval of both chambers.
  • Jurisdiction: (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. (2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.
  • lender: means --

    (I) an insured depository institution (as defined in section 1813 of title 12). See 42 USC 9601

  • Liabilities: The aggregate of all debts and other legal obligations of a particular person or legal entity.
  • Lien: A claim against real or personal property in satisfaction of a debt.
  • Litigation: A case, controversy, or lawsuit. Participants (plaintiffs and defendants) in lawsuits are called litigants.
  • Mortgage: The written agreement pledging property to a creditor as collateral for a loan.
  • municipal solid waste: means waste material--

    (i) generated by a household (including a single or multifamily residence). See 42 USC 9607

  • national contingency plan: means the national contingency plan published under section 311(c) 4 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act or revised pursuant to section 9605 of this title. See 42 USC 9601
  • National Credit Union Administration: The federal regulatory agency that charters and supervises federal credit unions. (NCUA also administers the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund, which insures the deposits of federal credit unions.) Source: OCC
  • natural resources: means land, fish, wildlife, biota, air, water, ground water, drinking water supplies, and other such resources belonging to, managed by, held in trust by, appertaining to, or otherwise controlled by the United States (including the resources of the fishery conservation zone established by the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act [16 U. See 42 USC 9601
  • navigable waters of the United States: means the waters of the United States, including the territorial seas. See 42 USC 9601
  • Obligation: An order placed, contract awarded, service received, or similar transaction during a given period that will require payments during the same or a future period.
  • offshore facility: means any facility of any kind located in, on, or under, any of the navigable waters of the United States, and any facility of any kind which is subject to the jurisdiction of the United States and is located in, on, or under any other waters, other than a vessel or a public vessel. See 42 USC 9601
  • onshore facility: means any facility (including, but not limited to, motor vehicles and rolling stock) of any kind located in, on, or under, any land or nonnavigable waters within the United States. See 42 USC 9601
  • Oversight: Committee review of the activities of a Federal agency or program.
  • owner or operator: means (i) in the case of a vessel, any person owning, operating, or chartering by demise, such vessel, (ii) in the case of an onshore facility or an offshore facility, any person owning or operating such facility, and (iii) in the case of any facility, title or control of which was conveyed due to bankruptcy, foreclosure, tax delinquency, abandonment, or similar means to a unit of State or local government, any person who owned, operated, or otherwise controlled activities at such facility immediately beforehand. See 42 USC 9601
  • Partnership: A voluntary contract between two or more persons to pool some or all of their assets into a business, with the agreement that there will be a proportional sharing of profits and losses.
  • person: means an individual, firm, corporation, association, partnership, consortium, joint venture, commercial entity, United States Government, State, municipality, commission, political subdivision of a State, or any interstate body. See 42 USC 9601
  • Plaintiff: The person who files the complaint in a civil lawsuit.
  • pollutant or contaminant: shall include , but not be limited to, any element, substance, compound, or mixture, including disease-causing agents, which after release into the environment and upon exposure, ingestion, inhalation, or assimilation into any organism, either directly from the environment or indirectly by ingestion through food chains, will or may reasonably be anticipated to cause death, disease, behavioral abnormalities, cancer, genetic mutation, physiological malfunctions (including malfunctions in reproduction) or physical deformations, in such organisms or their offspring. See 42 USC 9601
  • pollution liability: means liability for injuries arising from the release of hazardous substances or pollutants or contaminants. See 42 USC 9671
  • Public law: A public bill or joint resolution that has passed both chambers and been enacted into law. Public laws have general applicability nationwide.
  • purchasing group: means any group of persons which has as one of its purposes the purchase of pollution liability insurance on a group basis. See 42 USC 9671
  • release: means any spilling, leaking, pumping, pouring, emitting, emptying, discharging, injecting, escaping, leaching, dumping, or disposing into the environment (including the abandonment or discarding of barrels, containers, and other closed receptacles containing any hazardous substance or pollutant or contaminant), but excludes (A) any release which results in exposure to persons solely within a workplace, with respect to a claim which such persons may assert against the employer of such persons, (B) emissions from the engine exhaust of a motor vehicle, rolling stock, aircraft, vessel, or pipeline pumping station engine, (C) release of source, byproduct, or special nuclear material from a nuclear incident, as those terms are defined in the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 [42 U. See 42 USC 9601
  • Remainder: An interest in property that takes effect in the future at a specified time or after the occurrence of some event, such as the death of a life tenant.
  • remedial action: means  2 those actions consistent with permanent remedy taken instead of or in addition to removal actions in the event of a release or threatened release of a hazardous substance into the environment, to prevent or minimize the release of hazardous substances so that they do not migrate to cause substantial danger to present or future public health or welfare or the environment. See 42 USC 9601
  • removal: means  2 the cleanup or removal of released hazardous substances from the environment, such actions as may be necessary taken in the event of the threat of release of hazardous substances into the environment, such actions as may be necessary to monitor, assess, and evaluate the release or threat of release of hazardous substances, the disposal of removed material, or the taking of such other actions as may be necessary to prevent, minimize, or mitigate damage to the public health or welfare or to the environment, which may otherwise result from a release or threat of release. See 42 USC 9601
  • Reporter: Makes a record of court proceedings and prepares a transcript, and also publishes the court's opinions or decisions (in the courts of appeals).
  • response: means  2 remove, removal, remedy, and remedial action. See 42 USC 9601
  • risk retention group: means any corporation or other limited liability association taxable as a corporation, or as an insurance company, formed under the laws of any State--

    (A) whose primary activity consists of assuming and spreading all, or any portion, of the pollution liability of its group members. See 42 USC 9671

  • Secretary: means the Secretary of Health and Human Services. See 42 USC 201
  • security interest: includes a right under a mortgage, deed of trust, assignment, judgment lien, pledge, security agreement, factoring agreement, or lease and any other right accruing to a person to secure the repayment of money, the performance of a duty, or any other obligation by a nonaffiliated person. See 42 USC 9601
  • Service of process: The service of writs or summonses to the appropriate party.
  • service station dealer: means any person--

    (i) who owns or operates a motor vehicle service station, filling station, garage, or similar retail establishment engaged in the business of selling, repairing, or servicing motor vehicles, where a significant percentage of the gross revenue of the establishment is derived from the fueling, repairing, or servicing of motor vehicles, and

    (ii) who accepts for collection, accumulation, and delivery to an oil recycling facility, recycled oil that (I) has been removed from the engine of a light duty motor vehicle or household appliances by the owner of such vehicle or appliances, and (II) is presented, by such owner, to such person for collection, accumulation, and delivery to an oil recycling facility. See 42 USC 9601

  • Settlement: Parties to a lawsuit resolve their difference without having a trial. Settlements often involve the payment of compensation by one party in satisfaction of the other party's claims.
  • State: means any State of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the Virgin Islands, the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas, and any other territory or possession over which the United States has jurisdiction. See 42 USC 9671
  • State: include the several States of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the United States Virgin Islands, the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas, and any other territory or possession over which the United States has jurisdiction. See 42 USC 9601
  • State: includes , in addition to the several States, only the District of Columbia, Guam, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Northern Mariana Islands, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands. See 42 USC 201
  • Statute: A law passed by a legislature.
  • Statute of limitations: A law that sets the time within which parties must take action to enforce their rights.
  • Subpoena: A command to a witness to appear and give testimony.
  • Temporary restraining order: Prohibits a person from an action that is likely to cause irreparable harm. This differs from an injunction in that it may be granted immediately, without notice to the opposing party, and without a hearing. It is intended to last only until a hearing can be held.
  • Testify: Answer questions in court.
  • Testimony: Evidence presented orally by witnesses during trials or before grand juries.
  • Tort: A civil wrong or breach of a duty to another person, as outlined by law. A very common tort is negligent operation of a motor vehicle that results in property damage and personal injury in an automobile accident.
  • Transcript: A written, word-for-word record of what was said, either in a proceeding such as a trial or during some other conversation, as in a transcript of a hearing or oral deposition.
  • transportation: means  2 the movement of a hazardous substance by any mode, including a hazardous liquid pipeline facility (as defined in section 60101(a) of title 49), and in the case of a hazardous substance which has been accepted for transportation by a common or contract carrier, the term "transport" or "transportation" shall include any stoppage in transit which is temporary, incidental to the transportation movement, and at the ordinary operating convenience of a common or contract carrier, and any such stoppage shall be considered as a continuity of movement and not as the storage of a hazardous substance. See 42 USC 9601
  • Trial: A hearing that takes place when the defendant pleads "not guilty" and witnesses are required to come to court to give evidence.
  • Trust Fund: means the Hazardous Substance Superfund established by section 9507 of title 26. See 42 USC 9601
  • Trustee: A person or institution holding and administering property in trust.
  • Uphold: The decision of an appellate court not to reverse a lower court decision.
  • vehicle: includes every description of carriage or other artificial contrivance used, or capable of being used, as a means of transportation on land. See 1 USC 4
  • Venue: The geographical location in which a case is tried.
  • vessel: means every description of watercraft or other artificial contrivance used, or capable of being used, as a means of transportation on water. See 42 USC 9601