Outsourcing Justice: The California Supreme Court’s Decision in County of Santa Clara v. Superior Court (Atlantic Richfield)


On July 26, 2010, the California Supreme Court handed down its long-awaited decision in County of Santa Clara v. Superior Court (Atlantic Richfield), S163681 (July 26, 2010), handing the plaintiff’s class action bar a gift. The decision allows the Attorney General, each of California’s 58 District Attorneys, and countless additional City Attorneys to outsource to private attorneys the right to sue on behalf of the State for claims alleging public nuisance and potentially other claims, including claims for civil penalties under California’s unfair competition law (Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code § 17200 et seq.) (“UCL”).

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