An effective commercial lawyer is well-placed to advised clients on managing the risk of purchasing a property contaminated by methamphetamine (also known as crystal meth, or “P”) production, writes Ken Trass, in a recent edition of The Property Lawyer (November 2015). The issues are also canvassed in a recent NZLS Practice Briefing.
Transactional lawyers dealing with the sale and purchase of property need to be aware of these risks, says Mr Trass, due to the potential for insurance not covering any resulting loss and damage.
Mr Trass suggests that practitioners consider the need for appropriate contractual provisions in the agreement for sale and purchase, including, potentially, that the agreement be conditional on the vendor carrying out methamphetamine testing at the property.
There is growing concern about P contamination in the New Zealand legal profession. The use of properties for manufacturing P has sadly been widespread. It is a process which can cause damage to the property, create health risks, and well as blighting the property in the perception of future purchasers.
The insurance position should be considered on a case by case basis.
20 March 2016