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Lick Mill Creek Apartments v. Chicago Title Insurance Co.

California Court of Appeal, Sixth District
283 Cal. Rptr. 231 (1991)



Lick Mill Creek Apartments (plaintiff) (Lick Mill) purchased land in October 1986. The property had previously been used for commercial manufacturing purposes, and the soil, subsoil, and groundwater were contaminated with hazardous substances. Lick Mill purchased title insurance on the property from Chicago Title Insurance (defendant), which conducted a survey of the land and noted the presence of pipes, tanks, and pumps. Chicago Title issued a policy covering loss or damage resulting from, among other things, unmarketability of title and encumbrance on the land. Because state and federal law made subsequent purchasers responsible for the cleanup of hazardous material, Lick Mill expended monies to remove and clean up the land it purchased. Lick Mill sought reimbursement of their cleanup costs from Chicago Title. Chicago Title denied their claim, and Lick Mill sued. The trial court granted a demurrer on the complaint, and Lick Mill appealed.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Agliano, P.J.)

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