Who's Responsible for Workers' Asbestos Exposure During Tenant Construction?

December 16, 2014
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SITUATION

A shopping center leases space to a shoe store without notifying the tenant that the ceiling tiles contain asbestos. The lease requires the tenant to install a new heating and air-conditioning system in the space. It also makes the tenant solely responsible for compliance with “all laws” in connection with the work. The tenant hires an HVAC contractor to do the job. But because it doesn’t know about the asbestos, it doesn’t notify the contractor; neither does the owner.

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