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    Complyrpedia is the knowledge base for businesses that are required to comply with California environmental regulations

Certification of Financial Responsibility

The UST Certification of Financial Responsibility is a task in the Underground Storage Tank portion of the California Environmental Reporting System compliance program.

UST ICON Certification of Financial Responsibility           CERS ICON Certification of Financial Responsibility Complyrs


In the event of a leak or other release from an Underground Storage Tank (UST), the federal government mandates that all tank owners and operators have the financial means to provide compensation and cleanup.

Amount of required coverage

 Petroleum Marketers  $1,000,000
 Or Non-marketers with a monthly average throughput of:
 < 10,000 gallons  $500,000
 > 10,000 gallons  $1,000,000
 Number of Tanks  Annual Aggregate
 1-100  $1,000,000
 > 100  $2,000,000

Methods of Showing Financial Responsibility

There are numerous ways an owner or operator can show the ability to pay for damages in the event of a release. However, we will only cover the two most common mechanisms here:

  • Insurance
  • Leaking Underground Storage Tank Fund and CFO letter.

For additional information on other acceptable forms of financial responsibility, consult the USTCF Financial Responsibility Guide.



From the USTCF Financial Responsibility Guide:

Insurance may be in the form of a separate insurance policy (pollution liability coverage) or an endorsement to an existing policy. To cover all aspects of financial responsibility under one mechanism, the insurance policy must cover both taking corrective action, and compensating third parties for bodily injury and property damage caused by accidental releases arising from the operation of petroleum USTs. The coverage limits are determined by the per occurrence and annual aggregate requirements of each owner or operator. General liability coverage does not cover underground storage tanks. The insurance policy must be issued by an insurer that is licensed to transact the business of insurance or eligible to provide insurance as an excess or surplus lines insurer in one or more states. – (USTCF Financial Responsibility Guide)

Leaking Underground Storage Tank Fund and CFO letter.

The State UST Cleanup Fund is a federally approved financial assurance mechanism. It is paid for by a surcharge on all transportation fuel delivered to underground storage tanks. It is a reimbursement fund; no payments are made until the tank owner/operator has paid for remediation costs. In addition to applying for coverage under the State Fund, owners and operators of USTs must show the ability to pay the first $5,000 (this applies to for owners and operators that fulfill the definition of Priority Class B and C). The ability to pay the initial $5,000 is documented on the UST Letter from Chief Financial Officer. Most small and medium businesses use this form of financial responsibility for their tanks.

The Form

Section A.

Fill out section A in accordance with the “Amount of required coverage.”
CERS UST Certification of Financial Responsibility Section A Complyrs

Section B, responsible party

The responsible owner or operator business entity should be filled out in section B.
CERS UST Certification of Financial Responsibility Section B Complyrs

Section C. Mechanism

If you are using the State Fund, it should look something like this.
CERS UST Certification of Financial Responsibility Section C Complyrs

Note: If you are using the State Fund as any part of your demonstration of financial responsibility, your execution and submission of this certification also certifies that you are in compliance and shall maintain compliance with all conditions for participation in the Fund.
If you are using insurance, section C should look something like this:
CERS UST Certification of Financial Responsibility Section C2 Complyrs

Section D

In this section list facilities covered by the mechanism(s). If there are more than allowed by the three spaces, attach a list of facilities to be covered.
CERS UST Certification of Financial Responsibility Section D Complyrs

Section E

Signature of the responsible owner or operator business entity listed in section B.
Note: you can either sign and scan or use an electronic signature.
CERS UST Certification of Financial Responsibility Section E Complyrs


Petroleum Underground Storage Tank: Financial Responsibility Guide (PDF)

State Water Resources Control Board: Underground Storage Tank Cleanup Fund

Certification of Financial Responsibility Form (PDF)

Learn More About Complyrs


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