What happens if the response action actually increases the fair market value of the property?

The United States is allowed to claim a “windfall lien” on a BFPP’s property if the response action actually increased the fair market value of the property.   The amount sought as a windfall lien shall be the lesser of the unrecovered response costs or the increase in fair market value at the property attributable to the cleanup. 

However, windfall liens arise only where there is federal involvement at a site.  Since there is no federal involvement in the vast majority of contaminated sites, the possibility of a windfall lien is usually not a consideration.

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