Home>Articles>Role of the California Attorney General

California DOJ Headquarters
Articles Governor Highlight Legal Legislature

Role of the California Attorney General

The Department of Justice includes over 4,500 employees

By Chris Micheli, August 9, 2019 2:52 am

The Attorney General is the chief law enforcement officer of the state. The California Constitution establishes the Attorney General as the state’s chief law officer and is responsible for ensuring that the laws of the state are enforced. The Attorney General is vested with broad powers and carries out these duties through the Department of Justice.

The Department of Justice includes over 4,500 employees who are engaged in a variety of law enforcement and legal services and has main offices in Sacramento, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, Oakland and Fresno.

The general provisions of the Government Code affecting the AG are found in Article 1 as set forth in Sections 12500 – 12504. The annual salary of the AG includes all services rendered ex officio as a member of any board or commission. (Section 12500) The AG may appoint such assistants and deputies and employees as he or she deems necessary for the proper performance of the duties. Each appointee is a civil executive officer. (Section 12502)

No person can be eligible to be AG unless he or she has been admitted to practice before the California Supreme Court for at least 5 years preceding election or appointment to office. (Section 12503) The AG must not engage in the private practice of law nor associated directly or indirectly with any private practice attorney. (Section 12504)

The general powers and duties of the AG are found in Article 2 as set forth in Sections 12510 – 12532. The AG is head of the Department of Justice. (Section 12510) The AG has charge of all legal matters in which the State is interested, except that business of the University of California Regents and other boards or officers authorized by law to employ attorneys. (Section 12511)

The AG may defend public or private provider of health care again any claim that the civil rights of a person in state custody were violated when provided health care services provided by the Department of Corrections. (Section 12511.5) The AG must defend against any action challenging the California Legislature Transparency Act. (12511.7)

The AG must attend the Supreme Court and prosecute or defend all causes to which the state or a state office is a party. (Section 12512) After judgment of any such case, the AG must direct the issuing process to carry the judgment into execution. (Section 12513)

Any person who fails to pay on a timely basis any liability or penalty imposed by or on behalf of any state agency or official, the People of the State of California, the State of California, or any liability or penalty otherwise imposed in any matter prosecuted by the Attorney General, must be required to pay, in addition to that liability or penalty, interest, reasonable attorneys’ fees, and costs for any collection proceedings to enforce payment. (Section 12513.1)

The Attorney General must keep a docket of all causes in which he or she is required to appear. The docket must be open to the inspection of the public during business hours and contain specified information. (Section 12514) The AG must bid upon and purchase, in the name of the state and under the direction of the Department of General Services, any property offered for sale under execution issued upon judgments in favor or for the use of the state. (Section 12515)

Whenever the property of a judgment debtor in any judgment in favor or for the use of the state has been sold under a prior judgment, or is subject to any prior judgment, lien, or encumbrance, the AG must, under the direction of the Department of General Services, redeem the property from the prior judgment, lien, or encumbrance. (Section 12516)

When in his or her opinion it may be necessary for the collection or enforcement of any judgment in favor or for the use of the state, the AG must institute and prosecute, on behalf of the state, actions or proceedings to set aside and annul all conveyances fraudulently made by judgment debtors. (Section 12517)

Whenever any action is brought against the State or any State agency involving the title, or right to possession or the boundaries of any lands belonging to the State or in which it has any interest, the Attorney General may, when in his judgment the public interest so requires, upon his own motion or upon the request of any State agency, appear as attorney in defense of the State or State agency. (Section 12518)

The Attorney General must give his or her opinion in writing to any Member of the Legislature, the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Secretary of State, Controller, Treasurer, State Lands Commission, Superintendent of Public Instruction, Insurance Commissioner, any state agency, and any county counsel, district attorney, or sheriff when requested, upon any question of law relating to their respective offices. The Attorney General must give his or her opinion in writing to a city prosecuting attorney when requested, upon any question of law relating to criminal matters. (Section 12519)  

The Attorney General may not employ special counsel in any case except in specified circumstances. (Section 12520) The AG must account for and pay over to the proper officer all money which may come into his or her possession belonging to the State or to any county. (Section 12521) On or before the fifteenth day of September in each even-numbered year, the AG must report to the Governor the condition of the affairs of his office and of the reports received by him from district attorneys. (Section 12522)  

The Attorney General may appear for and represent the Indians of the State of California before the Indian Claims Commission created by an act of Congress approved August 13, 1946. (Section 12523) The AG may, from time to time, and as often as occasion may require, call into conference the district attorneys and sheriffs and the chiefs of police of this state, or such of them as he may deem advisable, for the purpose of discussing the duties of their respective offices, with the view of uniform and adequate enforcement of the laws of this state. (Section 12524) 

In any case in which a person dies while in the custody of any law enforcement agency or while in custody in a local or state correctional facility in this state, the law enforcement agency or the agency in charge of the correctional facility must report in writing to the Attorney General, within 10 days after the death, all facts in the possession of the law enforcement agency or agency in charge of the correctional facility concerning the death. (Section 12525.2)  

Each state and local agency that employs peace officers must annually report to the Attorney General data on all stops conducted by that agency’s peace officers for the preceding calendar year.  (Section 12525.5) The AG’s antitrust account is created in the General Fund. All money in the account is available to the Department of Justice for expenditure in carrying out the antitrust activities of the department. (Section 12526)  

This section of law applies to every action brought in the name of the people of the State of California by the Attorney General. The court may appoint a receiver, in actions in which the appointment of a receiver is authorized by law, upon the application of the Attorney General if the court make certain determinations. (Section 12527)  

There is in the Office of the Attorney General the Bureau of Medi-Cal Fraud, which must implement the federal Social Security Act, as amended by the federal Medicare-Medicaid Anti-Fraud and Abuse Amendments, and is authorized to conduct a statewide program for investigating and prosecuting, and referring for prosecution, violations of all applicable laws pertaining to fraud in the administration of the Medi-Cal program, the provision of medical assistance or medical supplies, or the activities of providers of medical assistance or medical suppliers under the Medi-Cal plan. (Section 12528)

Any agent, investigator, or auditor of the Bureau of Medi-Cal Fraud within the office of the Attorney General must have the authority to inspect, at any time, the business location of any Medi-Cal provider for the purpose of carrying out the duties of the bureau. (Section 12528.1) There is in the Department of Justice the Health Quality Enforcement Section. The primary responsibility of the section is to investigate and prosecute proceedings against licensees and applicants within the jurisdiction of the Medical Board of California, the California Board of Podiatric Medicine, the Board of Psychology, the Physical Therapy Board of California, or any committee under the jurisdiction of the Medical Board of California. (Section 12529)  

All complaints or relevant information concerning licensees that are within the jurisdiction of the Medical Board of California, the California Board of Podiatric Medicine, the Board of Psychology, or the Physical Therapy Board of California must be made available to the Health Quality Enforcement Section. (Section 12529.5) The Legislature finds and declares that the Medical Board of California, by ensuring the quality and safety of medical care, performs one of the most critical functions of state government. (Section 12529.6)

By March 1, 2016, the Medical Board of California, in consultation with the Department of Justice and the Department of Consumer Affairs, must report and make recommendations to the Governor and the Legislature on the vertical enforcement and prosecution model created under the law. (Section 12529.7)

The Public Rights Law Enforcement Special Fund is established in the State Treasury, to be administered by the Department of Justice. Moneys in the fund, upon appropriation by the Legislature, must be used by the Attorney General to support the investigation and prosecution of any matter within the authority of the Department of Justice’s Public Rights Division. (Section 12530)  

The Legislature finds and declares that California, represented by the California Attorney General, entered a national multistate settlement with the country’s five largest loan servicers. This agreement is broad ranging. (Section 12531)  

Until July 1, 2027, the Attorney General, or his or her designee, must engage in reviews of county, local, or private locked detention facilities in which noncitizens are being housed or detained for purposes of civil immigration proceedings in California, including any county, local, or private locked detention facility in which an accompanied or unaccompanied minor is housed or detained on behalf of, or pursuant to a contract with, the federal Office of Refugee Resettlement or the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement. (Section 12532)

Article 3 deals with escheated property and is set forth in Sections 12540 – 12544). The Attorney General must institute investigations for the discovery of all real and personal property to which the State may be entitled by escheat. (Section 12540) The Attorney General must commence and prosecute actions on behalf of the State for the purpose of having it adjudged that title to real or personal property, to which the State has become entitled by escheat, is vested in the State. (Section 12541)  

The Attorney General may employ counsel to act in his place for the investigation for discovery and the recovery of any such property. In such proceedings, counsel so employed have the authority of the Attorney General. (Section 12542) The compensation for services of such counsel must be determined by the Department of General Services and paid only out of the sums found to be escheated and recovered to the state. The Attorney General may pay to such counsel a sum not in excess of 10 percent of the sums actually received, and the balance must be paid into the estates of Deceased Persons Fund. (Section 12543)  

If an escheat proceeding is prosecuted by the staff of the Attorney General’s office, the Attorney General must recover, by presenting a claim to the Controller, all costs and charges of commencing and prosecuting the suit, from the funds so escheated. (Section 12544)

Article 4 deals with the supervision of district attorneys and is set forth in Sections 12550 – 12553. The Attorney General has direct supervision over the district attorneys of the several counties of the State and may require of them written reports as to the condition of public business entrusted to their charge. When he deems it advisable or necessary in the public interest, or when directed to do so by the Governor, he must assist any district attorney in the discharge of his duties, and may, where he deems it necessary, take full charge of any investigation or prosecution of violations of law of which the superior court has jurisdiction. (Section 12550) 

The powers and duties of the Attorney General with respect to grand juries are prescribed in Sections 913 and 923 of the Penal Code. (Section 12552) If a district attorney is disqualified to conduct any criminal prosecution within the county, the Attorney General may employ special counsel to conduct the prosecution. The attorney’s fee in such case is a legal charge against the State. (Section 12553)

Article 5 deals with the supervision of sheriffs and is set forth in Sections 12560 – 12561. The Attorney General has direct supervision over the sheriffs of the several counties of the State, and may require of them written reports concerning the investigation, detection and punishment of crime in their respective jurisdictions. (Section 12560)

Whenever he or she deems it necessary in the public interest, the Attorney General may appoint some competent person to perform the duties of sheriff with respect to the investigation or detection of a particular crime and cause the arrest of persons in connection therewith. Any person so appointed has all the powers of a sheriff with respect to the particular matter. (Section 12561)

Article 6 deals with special agents and investigators and is set forth in Sections 12570 – 12574. For the purpose of enabling him to perform the duties imposed upon him, the Attorney General may appoint and fix the compensation of special agents and investigators not exceeding 10 in number as he deems necessary. The Attorney General must not be required to divulge their identities. (Section 12570) When serving under the direction of the Attorney General, each special agent or investigator is a peace officer of this State. (Section 12571)  

Whenever the Attorney General deems it advisable to keep secret the identity of any special agent or investigator, claims for compensation and expenses of the special agent or investigator may be presented by the Attorney General in his own name with the statement that the charges have been incurred under this article. (Section 12572)  

Upon the completion of each secret investigation and, in any event, within not more than one year after the payment of any claim, the Attorney General must file with the Controller vouchers in support of the claim. The Controller must not divulge any information conveyed by the vouchers, except upon order of a court of record in cases where the information is relevant and material evidence or upon order of the Legislature. (Section 12573)  

The Attorney General may employ additional special agents and investigators not exceeding 10 in number, to enable him to carry out his duties relative to sabotage and subversive activities. The special agents and investigators are exempt from civil service. (Section 12574)

Article 7 deals with the Uniform Supervision of Trustees for Charitable Purposes Act and is set forth in Sections 12580 – 12599.8. This article may be cited as the Supervision of Trustees and Fundraisers for Charitable Purposes Act. (Section 12580) This law applies to all charitable corporations, unincorporated associations, trustees, and other legal entities holding property for charitable purposes, commercial fundraisers for charitable purposes, fundraising counsel for charitable purposes, and commercial coventurers, over which the state or the Attorney General has enforcement or supervisory powers. (Section 12581)  

“Solicitation” and “soliciting” are defined in the law. (Section 12581.2) “Trustee” is defined in the law. (Section 12582) “Charitable corporation” is defined in the law. (Section 12582.1) The filing, registration, and reporting provisions of this law do not apply to the United States, any state, territory, or possession of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or to any of their agencies or governmental subdivisions, to any religious corporation sole or other religious corporation or organization that holds property for religious purposes, or to any officer, director, or trustee thereof who holds property for like purposes, to a cemetery corporation regulated. (Section 12583)  

The Attorney General must establish and maintain a register of charitable corporations, unincorporated associations, and trustees subject to this law and of the particular trust or other relationship under which they hold property for charitable purposes and, to that end, may conduct whatever investigation is necessary, and must obtain from public records, court officers, taxing authorities, trustees, and other sources, whatever information, copies of instruments, reports, and records are needed for the establishment and maintenance of the register. (Section 12584) 

Every charitable corporation, unincorporated association, and trustee subject to this article must file with the Attorney General an initial registration form, under oath, setting forth information and attaching documents prescribed in accordance with rules and regulations of the Attorney General. (Section 12585) Every charitable corporation, unincorporated association, and trustee subject to this law must, in addition to filing copies of the instruments previously required, file with the Attorney General periodic written reports, under oath, setting forth information as to the nature of the assets held for charitable purposes and the administration thereof. (Section 12586)  

In addition to a registration fee, a charitable corporation or trustee, commercial fundraiser, fundraising counsel, or coventurer may be assessed a late fee or an additional fee of twenty-five dollars ($25) for each month or part of the month after the date on which the registration statement and financial report were due to be filed or after the period of extension granted for the filing if the charitable corporation or trustee, commercial fundraiser, fundraising counsel, or coventurer does any specified activities. (Section 12586.1)

All fines, penalties, attorney’s fees, if any, as authorized by law, and costs of investigation paid to the Attorney General must be used by the Department of Justice solely for the administration of the Attorney General’s charitable trust enforcement responsibilities. (Section 12586.2) The Attorney General may make additional rules and regulations necessary for the administration of this law, provided that any assessment of an annual registration or renewal fee from charitable trustees and corporations, commercial fundraisers, fundraising counsel, and commercial coventurers subject to this article, authorized by statute or regulation, must be used by the Department of Justice solely to operate and maintain the Attorney General’s Registry of Charitable Trusts and provide public access via the Internet to reports filed with the Attorney General. (Section 12587)

The Registry of Charitable Trusts Fund is hereby established in the State Treasury, to be administered by the Department of Justice. Moneys in the fund, upon appropriation by the Legislature, must be used by the Attorney General to operate and maintain the Attorney General’s Registry of Charitable Trusts and provide public access via the Internet to reports filed with the Attorney General. (Section 12587.1)  

The Attorney General may investigate transactions and relationships of corporations and trustees subject to this law for the purpose of ascertaining whether or not the purposes of the corporation or trust are being carried out in accordance with the terms and provisions of the articles of incorporation or other instrument. (Section 12588)  

When the Attorney General requires the attendance of any person, the Attorney General must issue an order setting forth the time when and the place where attendance is required and must cause the same to be delivered to or sent by registered mail to the person at least 14 days before the date fixed for attendance. (Section 12589) Subject to reasonable rules and regulations adopted by the Attorney General, the register, copies of instruments, and the reports filed with the Attorney General must be open to public inspection. (Section 12590)  

The Attorney General may institute appropriate proceedings to secure compliance with this law and to invoke the jurisdiction of the court. The powers and duties of the Attorney General provided in this law are in addition to the Attorney General’s existing powers and duties. (Section 12591) Any person who violates any provision of this law with intent to deceive or defraud any charity or individual is liable for a civil penalty not exceeding ten thousand dollars. (Section 12591.1)

In any case where the Attorney General has authority to institute an action or proceeding under this law, he or she may accept an assurance of voluntary compliance through which any person alleged to be engaged in any method, act, or practice in violation of this article agrees to discontinue that method, act, or practice. (Section 12591.2) This law must apply regardless of any contrary provisions of any instrument. (Section 12592)  

Every person who offers for probate any instrument which establishes a testamentary trust of property for charitable purposes or who records in any county or city and county any inter vivos transfer of property for charitable purposes must furnish a copy of such document to the Attorney General. (Section 12593) Every officer, agency, board, or commission of this State receiving applications for exemption from taxation of any corporation, charitable trust or similar relationship in which the corporation or trustee is subject to this article must annually file with the Attorney General a list of all applications received during the year. (Section 12594) 

This act must be so construed as to effectuate its general purpose to make uniform the law of those states which enact it. (Section 12595) A civil action brought by the Attorney General against trustees or other persons holding property in trust for charitable purposes or against any charitable corporation or any director or officer to enforce a charitable trust or to impress property with a trust for charitable purposes or to recover property or the proceeds thereof for and on behalf of any charitable trust or corporation, may be brought at any time within 10 years after the cause of action accrued. (Section 12596)  

In any proceeding brought by the Attorney General to secure compliance with the law, the judgment, if in favor of the state, must provide that the person having the responsibility or duty to comply with such provisions on behalf of any charitable trust or charitable corporation, must pay the reasonable expense necessarily incurred by the state in the investigation and prosecution of such action. (Section 12597)  

The primary responsibility for supervising charitable trusts in California, for ensuring compliance with trusts and articles of incorporation, and for protection of assets held by charitable trusts and public benefit corporations, resides in the Attorney General. The Attorney General has broad powers under common law and California statutory law to carry out these charitable trust enforcement responsibilities. (Section 12598)

“Commercial fundraiser for charitable purposes” is defined in the law. (Section 12599) “Fundraising counsel for charitable purposes” is defined in the law. (Section 12599.1) “Commercial coventurer” is defined. (Section 12599.2) A contract between a charitable organization and a commercial fundraiser for charitable purposes or fundraising counsel for charitable purposes must be voidable by the charitable organization unless the commercial fundraiser or the fundraising counsel is registered with the Attorney General’s Registry of Charitable Trusts prior to the commencement of the solicitation. (Section 12599.3)  

Each application for registration or renewal must be accompanied by a cash deposit or by a bond issued by an admitted surety in favor of the State of California and in a form acceptable to the Attorney General. (Section 12599.5) Charitable organizations and commercial fundraisers for charitable purposes must not misrepresent the purpose of the charitable organization or the nature or purpose or beneficiary of a solicitation. (Section 12599.6)

A commercial fundraiser for charitable purposes must maintain during each solicitation campaign and for not less than 10 years following the completion of each solicitation campaign records, including any electronic records, containing the following information, which must be available for inspection upon demand by the Attorney General. (Section 12599.7) 

For any year that the balance sheet of a charitable organization shows that it holds restricted net assets, while reporting negative unrestricted net assets, the organization must provide an explanation of its compliance with its charitable trust responsibilities and proof of directors’ and officers’ liability insurance coverage to the Attorney General’s Registry of Charitable Trusts. (Section 12599.8)

Article 8 deals with environmental actions and is set forth in Sections 12600 – 12612. The Legislature finds and declares (a) It is the policy of this state to conserve, protect, and enhance its environment. It is the policy of this state to prevent destruction, pollution, or irreparable impairment of the environment and the natural resources of this state.  (b) It is in the public interest to provide the people of the State of California through the Attorney General with adequate remedy to protect the natural resources of the State of California from pollution, impairment, or destruction. (c) Conservation of natural resources and protection of the environment are pursuits often beyond the scope of inquiry, legislation, or enforcement by local government; several local public entities existing in the same ecological community have acted in differing and, sometimes, conflicting manners; uniform, coordinated, and thorough response to the questions of protection of environment and preservation of natural resources must be assured; and these matters are of statewide concern. (Section 12600)  

The provisions of this law are not exclusive, and the remedies provided for in this law must be in addition to any other remedies provided for in any other law or available under common law. (Section 12601) If any provision of this law or the application thereof to any person or circumstance is held to be unconstitutional, the application of such provision to other persons or circumstances must not be affected. (Section 12602) 

This article must be liberally construed and applied to promote its underlying purposes. (Section 12603) “Person” is defined in the law. (Section 12604) “Natural resource” is defined. (Section 12605) The Attorney General must be permitted to intervene in any judicial or administrative proceeding in which facts are alleged concerning pollution or adverse environmental effects which could affect the public generally. (Section 12606) 

The Attorney General may maintain an action for equitable relief in the name of the people of the State of California against any person for the protection of the natural resources of the state from pollution, impairment, or destruction. (Section 12607) In any action maintained, the defendant may also show, by way of an affirmative defense, that there is no more feasible and prudent alternative to the defendant’s conduct, and that such conduct is consistent with the protection of the public health, safety, and welfare. (Section 12608)  

Any action brought to review, set aside, void or annul any decision in any zoning matter of an administrative body or of a legislative body, or concerning any of the proceedings, acts or determinations taken, done or made prior to such decision, or to determine the reasonableness, legality or validity of any such decision must not be maintained unless such action is commenced within 180 days after the date of such decision. (Section 12609)  

In granting temporary and permanent equitable relief, the court may impose such conditions upon the defendant as are required to protect the natural resources of the state from pollution, impairment, or destruction. (Section 12610) Whenever proceedings before an administrative agency are pending or available to determine the legality of the defendants’ conduct, program, or product, the court must stay the action brought pending the completion of such proceedings unless such stay will result in irreparable pollution, impairment or destruction to any natural resource. (Section 12611)  

In any administrative, licensing, or other such proceeding or in any proceeding for judicial review which is made available by law, the Attorney General must be permitted to intervene upon showing that the proceeding or action for judicial review involves conduct, programs, or products which may have the effect of impairing, polluting, or destroying the natural resources of the state. (Section 12612)

Article 8.2 deals with international student exchange visitor placement organizations and is set forth in Sections 12620 – 12630. This article must be known and may be cited as the Uniform Supervision of International Student Exchange Visitor Placement Organizations Act of 1994. (Section 12620) For the purposes of this article, the following terms are defined: “International student exchange visitor placement organization” or “organization”, “International student exchange visitor” or “student”, “Nonimmigrant visa”, “USIA”, and “Registry” (Section 12621)  

The Attorney General must establish and maintain a register of organizations subject to this law. The registry must be known as the Registry of International Student Exchange Visitor Placement Organizations. (Section 12622) Each organization must, prior to arranging the placement of any international student exchange visitor in any school in California, register with the Attorney General’s Registry of International Student Exchange Visitor Placement Organizations on the registration form prescribed by the Attorney General. (Section 12623)

The Registry of International Student Exchange Visitor Placement Organizations Fund is created in the State Treasury. All fees collected by the Attorney General pursuant to this law must be deposited into that fund. (Section 12624) Subject to reasonable rules and regulations adopted by the Attorney General, the registry and copies of instruments and the documents filed with the Attorney General must be open to public inspection. (Section 12625)  

An application for registration must be submitted in the manner and on the forms prescribed by the Attorney General. (Section 12626) The Attorney General must adopt regulations. (Section 12627) Each organization must provide an informational document, in English, to each student, host family, and designated school official in which the student is being placed. (Section 12628)  

If the Attorney General has probable cause to believe that the organization is not complying with this law, the Attorney General may conduct whatever investigation is necessary, and may seek a subpoena to obtain from public records, court officers, taxing authorities, trustees, officers and employees of an organization, and other sources, whatever information, copies of instruments, documents, reports, and records that are needed for the establishment and maintenance of the register. (Section 12629)  

Any person or organization who violates any provision of this article or who willfully and knowingly provides false or incorrect information to the Attorney General in filing documents required by this law, whether or not the documents are verified, is guilty of a misdemeanor. (Section 12630)

Article 9 deals with false claims actions and is set forth in Sections 12650 – 12656. This article must be known and may be cited as the False Claims Act and defines these terms: “Claim”, “Knowing” and “knowingly”, “Material”, “Obligation”, “Political subdivision”, “Political subdivision funds”, “Prosecuting authority”, “Person”, and “State funds”. (Section 12650)  

Any person who commits any specified acts in this law must have violated this law and must be liable to the state or to the political subdivision for three times the amount of damages that the state or political subdivision sustains because of the act of that person. (Section 12651) The Attorney General must diligently investigate violations involving state funds. If the Attorney General finds that a person has violated or is violating the law, the Attorney General may bring a civil action under this section against that person. (Section 12652)

The University of California must be considered a political subdivision, and the General Counsel of the University of California must be considered a prosecuting authority for the purposes of this law, and must have the right to intervene in an action brought by the Attorney General or a private party or investigate and bring an action, if it is determined that the claim involves the University of California. (Section 12652.5)  

Any employee, contractor, or agent must be entitled to all relief necessary to make that employee, contractor, or agent whole, if that employee, contractor, or agent is discharged, demoted, suspended, threatened, harassed, or in any other manner discriminated against in the terms and conditions of his or her employment because of lawful acts done by the employee, contractor, agent, or associated others in furtherance of an action under this law. (Section 12653)  

A civil action must not be filed more than six years after the date on which the violation is committed, or more than three years after the date when facts material to the right of action are known or reasonably should have been known by the Attorney General or prosecuting authority with jurisdiction to act under this law, but in no event more than 10 years after the date on which the violation is committed. (Section 12654)  

For statute of limitations purposes, any pleading filed by the Attorney General or prosecuting authority must relate back to the filing date of the complaint of the person who originally brought the action, to the extent that the claim of the state or political subdivision arises out of the conduct, transactions, or occurrences set forth, or attempted to be set forth, in the prior complaint of that person. (Section 12654.5)  

The provisions of this law are not exclusive, and the remedies provided for in this law must be in addition to any other remedies provided for in any other law or available under common law. (Section 12655) If a violation of this law is alleged or the application or construction of this law is in issue in any proceeding in the Supreme Court of California, a state court of appeal, or the appellate division of a superior court, the person or political subdivision that commenced that proceeding must serve a copy of the notice or petition initiating the proceeding, and a copy of each paper, including briefs, that the person or political subdivision files in the proceeding within three days of the filing, on the Attorney General, directed to the attention of the False Claims Section in Sacramento, California. (Section 12651)

Article 10 deals with securities and commodities and is set forth in Sections 12657 – 12661. The following terms must have the following meanings: “Securities law” and “Commodities law”. (Section 12657)  

Whenever it appears to the Attorney General that any person has engaged or is about to engage in any act or practice constituting a violation of the securities law or the commodities law, the Attorney General may, in his or her discretion, bring an action in the name of the people of the State of California in the superior court to enjoin the acts or practices or to enforce compliance with the securities law or the  (Section 12658)

The Attorney General, in his or her discretion, (1) may make public or private investigations within or outside of this state that the Attorney General deems necessary to determine whether any person has violated or is about to violate the securities law or the commodities law or to aid in the enforcement of these laws or in the prescribing of rules and forms by the Commissioner of Corporations under these laws, and (2) may publish information concerning any violation of the securities law or the commodities law. (Section 12659)  

Any person who violates any provision of the securities law or the commodities law must be liable for a civil penalty not to exceed twenty-five thousand dollars for each violation, which must be assessed and recovered in a civil action brought in the name of the people of the State of California by the Attorney General in any court of competent jurisdiction. (Section 12660)

Chris Micheli

Chris Micheli is a Principal with the Sacramento governmental relations firm of Aprea & Micheli, Inc. He is also an Adjunct Professor at McGeorge School of Law in its Capital Lawyering Program.

Latest posts by Chris Micheli (see all)

Spread the news:
RELATED ARTICLES
Filter by
Post Page
Highlight Articles Governor Legislature
Sort by

Role of the California State Treasurer

Serves as chairperson of the Public Employees’ Retirement System, State Teachers’ Retirement System
August 16, 2019 6:29 am

18

Role of the California Lieutenant Governor

Lt. Gov. is largely a ceremonial role in this state
August 5, 2019 6:15 am

18

One thought on “Role of the California Attorney General

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *