If your UST system experiences a leak and petroleum contamination is found in the soil or groundwater, you are responsible for the clean-up of the contamination. The Financial Assurance Fund was created, in part, to help pay the costs of performing the corrective actions required to remediate your site. In the event of a suspected or confirmed release you should immediately report the release to
BUSTR and call the Board and request an
application for eligibility. If the eligibility is approved, a claim application is sent to the owner. If eligibility is denied, the owner can appeal the determination within thirty days after receipt of the denial.
In order to expedite the eligibility review, the application should be fully completed including the original signature of the tank owner or operator, a copy of the State Fire Marshal’s registration for the year the release occurred, and a copy of the closure report or other relevant documents describing the nature and extent of the release.
Ohio Revised Code 3737.92 and O.A.C. 3737-1-07 set forth the Fund’s eligibility requirements. Those requirements include:
1. An application for eligibility has been filed within one year from the date the release was required to be reported to the Fire Marshal;
2. The corrective action performed or to be performed has been authorized under the rules of the Fire Marshal;
3. The costs of performing the corrective action are necessary to comply with the rules of the Fire Marshal governing corrective actions;
4. At the time that the release was first suspected or confirmed, a responsible person possessed a valid Certificate of Coverage for the UST system from which the release occurred and the validity is maintained in accordance with O.A.C. 3737-1-04(E)(3);
5. The UST was registered with the Fire Marshal when the release was first suspected or confirmed, or the Fire Marshal has recommended reimbursement be made because good cause existed for the failure to register;
6. The responsible person was in compliance with all rules and orders of the Fire Marshal;
7. The responsible person has demonstrated financial responsibility for the deductible amount of coverage for the UST system from which the release occurred;
8. The responsible person has not falsified any attestation contained on a registration application;
9. The responsible person has met the release reporting requirements; and
10. The petroleum underground storage tank system from which the release occurred was in compliance with rules, other than rules regarding registration, adopted by the Fire Marshal when the release was first suspected or confirmed.
Eligibility can be maintained by, keeping all required records, paying all annual fees and late payment fees, complying with all Fire Marshal regulations and orders, and meeting the criteria of assurability established by O.A.C. 3737-1-04(E)(3). (Please refer to the FundFact entitled Obtaining a Valid Certificate of Coverage).
ESTABLISHING THIRD-PARTY ELIGIBILITY (OAC 3737-1-19)
The Fund also reimburses UST owners/operators for the costs of third-party bodily injury or property damage caused by an accidental release of petroleum from their assured and eligible UST systems. As a prerequisite to determine Fund reimbursement to be paid for third-party claims for bodily injury and/or property damages the following condition, in addition to 4 through 10 listed above, is established:
An application for eligibility has been made within thirty days from the first of any of the following events: service of a third-party complaint against a responsible person, the submission of a third-party demand for settlement, or notice of representation of a third-party in a lawsuit against a responsible person.
A determination of eligibility does not constitute an obligation for reimbursement from the Fund.
Reimbursement or payment from the Fund for third-party claims is limited to expenses associated with bodily injury or property damages.
“Bodily injury” means injury to the body or sickness or disease contracted by a person as the result of an accidental release of petroleum.
“Property damage” means actual and reasonable, incurred or pending expenses for damage to property as the result of an accidental release of petroleum.