Recent media coverage and high-profile litigation involving perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) has drawn the attention of the real estate valuation community. PFCs and their more common forms, perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), are a class of synthetic compounds effective in repelling water, oil, and grease. Since the introduction of PFCs in the late 1940s, they have been used in a variety of industrial and manufacturing applications, including in the production of waterproof fabrics, insulation materials, non-stick cookware, and fire-fighting foam. As claims for damages to real estate involving these chemicals emerge, it is important for attorneys and their experts to understand the characteristics of PFCs and how their presence may or may not impact real property values.
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