News & Analysis as of

Public Records Act

Petitioner is Prevailing Party Entitled to Attorney Fees Where Undisputed Evidence Proves that Writ Petition Motivated City to...

by Miller Starr Regalia on

The California Public Records Act provides for public inspection of records maintained by state and local agencies and declares that “access to information concerning the conduct of the people’s business is a fundamental and...more

Under The Public Records Act, A Losing Party May Be The Prevailing Party

by Allen Matkins on

When the California legislature enacted the Public Records Act, it declared “access to information concerning the conduct of the people’s business is a fundamental and necessary right of every person in this state”. Gov’t...more

Colorado Open Records Act Amendments Take Effect This Month

by Holland & Knight LLP on

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper signed Senate Bill 17-040 into law on June 1, 2017, marking the first major update to the Colorado Open Records Act (CORA) in more than 20 years. The amendments to CORA are effective on Aug. 9,...more

Federal government proposes reform of public sector Access to Information Act

by DLA Piper on

The Government of Canada has proposed amendments to the federal Access to Information Act (ATIA) with the stated goal of improving public access to government records. Access to Information advocates have been calling for an...more

Government Employees Can’t Hide Behind Their Private Email Accounts: California Supreme Court Expands Public Records Definition To...

by Weintraub Tobin on

The use of private email servers and communications devices by government officials was a major issue in the 2016 election, from the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s email practices to the hacking of a private email account...more

Attorney Billing Records Not Categorically Protected by California Attorney-Client Privilege

by Holland & Knight LLP on

Holland & Knight issued an alert in June 2015, written by Allison Martin Rhodes and Craig S. Weinstein, regarding an earlier California Court of Appeal ruling in this case. This alert provides an update after a December 2016...more

Finally Relief for Florida Agencies Safe Harbor with Public Records Requests

Florida public agencies have made tremendous efforts in training their staff to comply with their responsibility under the Florida Public Records Act. Unfortunately, one technical mistake has turned this law into the Lawyer’s...more

First Quarter CEQA Update in Under 60 Seconds

by Stoel Rives LLP on

Okay, maybe slightly longer than 60 seconds. The point being, though, that CEQA case updates really should not read like law school case briefs. Long discussion of the lower court’s findings? No thank you. ...more

Public Records Act And The Price Of Privacy: Part 2

In part 1 of this two-part series we discussed how the City of San Jose v. Superior Court (Smith) will forever change the nature of public service. In part 2, we will offer practical suggestions to respond to this change....more

Public Records Act And The Price Of Privacy: Part 1

In part 1 of this two-part series we’ll discuss how the City of San Jose v. Superior Court (Smith) will forever change the nature of public service. In part 2, we will offer practical suggestions to respond to this change....more

California Supreme Court Rules Public Employees Personal Email Accounts are Subject to California Public Records Act

Earlier this month, the California Supreme Court issued an important ruling regarding the California Public Records Act (“CPRA”) (Govt. Code §6250 et seq.) and held that writings of a public employee may be subject to the...more

California Public Employees' Personal Accounts May Be Subject to Public Records Act Requests

by Holland & Knight LLP on

In City of San Jose v. Superior Court, No. S218066 (Cal. Mar. 2, 2017), the Supreme Court of California decided unanimously that communications made or stored on a public employee's personal account, including emails sent...more

Civil Discovery Act Applies to Public Records Act Proceedings, California Appellate Court Concludes

by Best Best & Krieger LLP on

Public entities litigating California Public Records Act cases may now face the additional burden of responding to civil discovery requests. The Second District Court of Appeal recently issued its opinion in City of Los...more

California Supreme Court Rules that Texts and Emails on Personal Devices May Be Considered Public Records

by Allen Matkins on

The California Supreme Court recently held in City of San Jose v. Superior Court, California Supreme Court Case No. S218066, that public employees' digital messages existing in private electronic devices (e.g., smartphones...more

E-Communications on Private Accounts May Be Subject to Disclosure Under the California Public Records Act

by Best Best & Krieger LLP on

The California Supreme Court has finally decided a question that has, for years, vexed courts, public officials, the media and citizen watchdogs: Are electronic communications — emails, voicemails and texts — on private...more

Is a Private Email a Public Record? Context Matters!

by Best Best & Krieger LLP on

In deciding last week that communications on public agency employees’ private devices may be subject to disclosure under the Public Records Act, the California Supreme Court included some direction to help make the...more

California Supreme Court Rules that Public Business Conducted on Personal Devices Result in Public Records

by Nossaman LLP on

In a major development impacting all public entities subject to the California Public Records Act (Gov. Code § 6250 et seq., hereafter “CPRA”), on March 2, 2017, the California Supreme Court unanimously held that public...more

California Supreme Court Rules Public Officials' and Employees' Personal Accounts Do Not Escape Reach of Public Records Act

by Downey Brand LLP on

On March 2, 2017, the California Supreme Court ruled in City of San Jose v. Superior Court that where a public employee uses a personal email account or texts to communicate about the conduct of public business, those...more

California Supreme Court Holds that Communications Related to Public Business do not Cease to be Public Records Just Because They...

by Miller Starr Regalia on

On March 2, 2017, in what is easily the sunniest day in this long, wet winter, the Supreme Court of California issued a landmark ruling regarding the California Public Records Act (Cal. Govt. Code § 6250 et seq.), holding...more

Are Attorneys’ Bills Privileged Once Litigation Ends – California Supreme Court Says No in ACLU Litigation?

by Cozen O'Connor on

The California Supreme Court recently held, in Los Angeles Board of Supervisors v. Superior Court (2016) that attorneys’ invoices may not be protected by the attorney-client privilege after litigation ends. The issue arose...more

California High Court Questions Privileged Nature of Attorney Invoices

In Disney’s The Lion King, the wise lion Mufasa sits atop a rock crag with his heir, the cub Simba, looking down on the Serengeti below. “Everything the light touches,” Mufasa instructs, “is our kingdom.” A similar scene...more

Big Changes for California’s Labor, Employment Laws

by Best Best & Krieger LLP on

Californians are starting to feel the effects of new labor and employment laws passed in 2016 that raise the state’s minimum wage, aim to erase wage gaps, protect immigrant and disabled workers, as well as establish...more

California Supreme Court Concludes Attorney Invoices Privileged During Ongoing Litigation

Attorney invoices may be protected in their entirety by the attorney-client privilege during ongoing litigation. After litigation has concluded, however, those same invoices may be discoverable. So concludes the California...more

California Supreme Court Limits Attorney-Client Privilege for Lawyer Invoices

by Perkins Coie on

In a 4-3 decision, the California Supreme Court ruled that attorney invoices submitted to public agencies are not categorically exempt from disclosure under the California Public Records Act. Los Angeles County Board of...more

The Ethics Advisor: Good Governance Floats on a Sea of Integrity

by Best Best & Krieger LLP on

“In civilized life, law floats in a sea of ethics,” the late Earl Warren, who served as a U.S. Supreme Court chief justice and as California attorney general and governor, stated in a 1962 speech. In a closely related sense,...more

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