There may be some questions posed during a property ownership and/or business operator transaction. Whether real or perceived contamination exists on site, properties associated with such a stigma can carry a high risk for the owner, business operator, and their customer/client. Most people who are involved in commercial or industrial operations are aware of the strict environmental regulations that can greatly impact the financial condition of a business.
Although not always initiated by property/business ownership transactions, most Environmental Assessments are conducted to satisfy legal agreements or regulatory requirements, such as the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA). To qualify as an "innocent landowner" or "nonresponsible party", the potential buyer/ new operator must conduct all appropriate inquiries into the previous uses of a property, specifically related to hazardous materials, in order to identify environmental conditions.