0820 Department of Justice
Program Descriptions


Legal Services is organized into three elements: (1) Civil Law, (2) Criminal Law, and (3) Public Rights.

Civil Law represents the State of California and its officers, agencies, departments, boards, commissions, and employees in civil matters. It provides advice to these clients, defends cases brought against them and prosecutes cases to vindicate state interests. Deputy Attorneys General in Civil Law are responsible for managing and litigating cases before administrative tribunals, and in both state and federal courts at the trial level and on appeal, including appeals before the United States and California Supreme Courts. Deputies work in one of nine sections: Business and Tax; Correctional Law; Employment and Administrative Mandates; Opinions; Government Law; Health, Education and Welfare; Health Quality Enforcement; Licensing; or Tort and Condemnation.

Criminal Law represents the state in criminal matters before the Appellate and Supreme courts. Criminal Law also fulfills the Attorney General's responsibilities of assisting district attorneys in cases for which they are recused, conducts criminal investigations, represents the Governor, Board of Parole Hearings, and California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation in state and federal habeas corpus cases and appeals, and other proceedings relating to parole decisions and conditions of confinement in the state prisons and defends state and federal habeas corpus matters. Additional responsibilities include enforcing the Political Reform Act, advising the Governor on extradition matters, investigating and prosecuting Medi-Cal provider fraud, investigating and prosecuting the abuse or neglect of elder and dependent adults residing in long-term health care facilities, and investigating, prosecuting, and coordinating litigation involving white-collar crime, high-tech/computer/privacy crime, and financial crimes against the elderly.

Public Rights protects and preserves the public interest by providing legal services to state agencies and Constitutional Officers and by bringing actions in the name of the Attorney General to protect the public. Public Rights provides specialized services in the following areas: Civil Rights Enforcement; Charitable Trusts (including Registry of Charitable Trusts); Natural Resources Law; Corporate Fraud (including False Claims, Underground Economy, Energy and Corporate Responsibility); Indian and Gaming Law; Environment Law; Land Law; Consumer Law (including Sellers of Travel); Antitrust Law; and Tobacco Litigation Enforcement.