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We hate the fact that good projects get sued, but we love winning CEQA and Planning and Zoning, Subdivision Map Act, and other land use lawsuits.

We work on both CEQA compliance and CEQA litigation. For a complex, compliance-based statute like CEQA, having a litigator’s perspective aids in spotting and addressing crucial issues during the entitlement process, before becoming a problem in litigation. Should you have the unfortunate experience of being sued, we bring our deep experience with CEQA and other land use laws into the courtroom to skillfully defend your project.

Litigation under CEQA, Planning and Zoning and Related Statutes

Monchamp Meldrum LLP has a wealth of litigation experience. We have litigated numerous cases at trial and on appeal in courts across the State. While many of our cases have resulted in favorable judgments or appellate opinions, we have successfully resolved many more cases through settlement or dismissal before trial. These cases primarily raise CEQA claims, though are often combined with claims under other state statutes or local codes, including Planning and Zoning Law, Subdivision Map Act, or another statute like the Brown Act or the Fair Political Practices Act.

Our approach to litigation is always: what makes the most sense for the client to get through this hassle. Often this is settlement. But settlement is not always possible and litigation is often necessary or even desired. In litigation, our goal is to win on every issue. Even when complete victory is elusive, we have successfully limited court-mandated remedies through advocacy or post-trial settlement so as to ensure the project can proceed. And while winning is critical, we know that resolving litigation as quickly and efficiently as possible is paramount because unnecessary costs and delays over lawsuits impact our clients’ bottom line.

Successful Published Cases in the Courts of Appeal

  • Covina Residents for Responsible Development v. City of Covina (2018) 230 Cal. Rptr. 3d 550
  • Friends of the College of San Mateo Gardens v. San Mateo County Community College District (2016) 1 Cal.5th 937
  • Coalition for a Sustainable Future in Yucaipa v. City of Yucaipa (2015) 238 Cal.App.4th 513
  • San Francisco Beautiful v. City and County of San Francisco (2014) 26 Cal.App.4th 1012
  • Citizens for a Green San Mateo v. San Mateo City College District (2014) 226 Cal.App.4th 1572
  • Citizens for Responsible, Equitable, Environmental Development (C.R.E.E.D) v. City of Chula Vista (2011) 197 Cal.App.4th 327
  • Coalition for a Sustainable Future in Yucaipa v. City of Yucaipa (2011) 198 Cal.App.4th 939
  • Friends of the Sierra Railroad v. Tuolumne Park & Recreation District (2007) 147 Cal.App.4th 643