Gordon C. Duus, Esq.
Gordon Duus is the chairman of the firm’s environmental law department. His practice includes:
Transactions. Gordon has handled the environmental aspects of thousands of real estate and commercial transactions. This includes representing clients who are buying, selling, leasing and financing real estate, with an emphasis on managing the issues arising from properties contaminated by hazardous substances. He also has extensive experience assisting clients that are involved in the purchase or sale of stock or assets, including mergers and acquisitions. When the cost of an ongoing cleanup is a significant obstacle to closing a transaction for a client, he has negotiated numerous guaranteed cleanup cost contracts with environmental consultants, where the consultant accepts the risk that the cleanup will exceed the guaranteed cleanup cost.
Environmental Insurance. Gordon has assisted clients with the purchase of environmental insurance policies for over 100 properties. These policies provide coverage for the cost to clean up newly discovered pollution conditions on a property, as well as for third party lawsuits for property damage and bodily injury. He has also represented numerous clients in the negotiation and purchase of cost cap coverage, which provides coverage if the cleanup costs exceed an agreed upon cost. Often these insurance policies were used as part of an effort to help a transaction proceed to closing.
Cleanup Oversight. Gordon has substantial experience handling matters involving the federal Superfund law, New Jersey’s Industrial Site Recovery Act, underground storage tank laws and other laws requiring the remediation of contaminated property. He has obtained Brownfields approvals allowing clients to obtain state funds to pay for the remediation of their properties.
Development Permits. Gordon advises developers of industrial, commercial and residential real estate on how to obtain the permits needed to develop in areas subject to governmental regulation, such as freshwater wetlands, coastal areas, floodways, the New Jersey Highlands, the Pinelands, the Hackensack Meadowlands and riparian lands.
Cleanup Cost Recovery. Gordon counsels clients who have paid or are paying for the cleanup of contaminated properties on how to avoid incurring cleanup costs or to recover those costs from both other parties that are responsible for the contamination and insurance companies.
Regulatory Compliance. Gordon regularly counsels clients on how to comply with a wide variety of environmental laws, including those governing solid waste, hazardous waste, air pollution, water pollution. He has represented many clients in the defense of enforcement actions brought by federal and state environmental agencies, including the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.
Energy. Gordon has assisted clients with various energy projects, including solar power projects, both roof and ground mounted, and natural gas leases.
Selected Publications / Profiles / Presentations
Gordon has lectured regularly on environmental law issues before such organizations as Cook College of Rutgers University and the New Jersey State Bar Association. He also has written many articles on environmental law topics, including:
- Using the New Jersey Spill Act Safe Harbor to Protect Lenders Environmental Claims Journal, September 2013
- “Using Insurance to Manage Envirnmental Risk in Transactions” New Jersey Law Journal, December 12, 2011
- New Jersey Acts to Reduce Nutrient Pollutants in Barnegat Bay, New Jersey Law Journal, February 28, 2011
- Incentives Drive Expanded Use of Solar Energy in New Jersey, New Jersey Law Journal, December 13, 2010
- Guaranteed Cleanup Cost Contacts: A Keystone for Contaminated Property Deals, New Jersey Law Journal, February 23, 2009
Honors / Professional Activities
- Expert Witness. Gordon has been named as an expert witness on environmental issues, testifying on behalf of plaintiffs or defendants in four lawsuits.
- Martindale-Hubbell rating of A-V Preeminent. Gordon was awarded the highest rating available for his professionalism and the quality of his legal work by the premier directory of legal professionals.
- The Best Lawyers in America. Gordon was selected by his peers for inclusion in the area of Environmental Law.
- New Jersey Super Lawyers. Gordon was selected by his peers for inclusion in the Environmental practice area.
Areas of Practice
Environmental Law (Chair)
New Jersey, 1982
District of Columbia, 1981
U.S. Supreme Court, 1987
George Washington University Law School, Juris Doctor., with honors
University of Pennsylvania, B.A. in marine and freshwater biology, magna cum laude
Professional Association Memberships
American Bar Association
New Jersey Bar Association
Bergen County Bar Association