(a) A person who violates or threatens to violate Section
25249.5 or 25249.6 may be enjoined in any court of competent
(b) (1) A person who has violated Section 25249.5 or 25249.6 is
liable for a civil penalty not to exceed two thousand five hundred
dollars ($2,500) per day for each violation in addition to any other
penalty established by law. That civil penalty may be assessed and
recovered in a civil action brought in any court of competent
(2) In assessing the amount of a civil penalty for a violation of
this chapter, the court shall consider all of the following:
(A) The nature and extent of the violation.
(B) The number of, and severity of, the violations.
(C) The economic effect of the penalty on the violator.
(D) Whether the violator took good faith measures to comply with
this chapter and the time these measures were taken.
(E) The willfulness of the violator's misconduct.
(F) The deterrent effect that the imposition of the penalty would
have on both the violator and the regulated community as a whole.
(G) Any other factor that justice may require.
(c) Actions pursuant to this section may be brought by the
Attorney General in the name of the people of the State of
California, by a district attorney, by a city attorney of a city
having a population in excess of 750,000, or, with the consent of the
district attorney, by a city prosecutor in a city or city and county
having a full-time city prosecutor, or as provided in subdivision
(d) Actions pursuant to this section may be brought by a person in
the public interest if both of the following requirements are met:
(1) The private action is commenced more than 60 days from the
date that the person has given notice of an alleged violation of
Section 25249.5 or 25249.6 that is the subject of the private action
to the Attorney General and the district attorney, city attorney, or
prosecutor in whose jurisdiction the violation is alleged to have
occurred, and to the alleged violator. If the notice alleges a
violation of Section 25249.6, the notice of the alleged violation
shall include a certificate of merit executed by the attorney for the
noticing party, or by the noticing party, if the noticing party is
not represented by an attorney. The certificate of merit shall state
that the person executing the certificate has consulted with one or
more persons with relevant and appropriate experience or expertise
who has reviewed facts, studies, or other data regarding the exposure
to the listed chemical that is the subject of the action, and that,
based on that information, the person executing the certificate
believes there is a reasonable and meritorious case for the private
action. Factual information sufficient to establish the basis of the
certificate of merit, including the information identified in
paragraph (2) of subdivision (h), shall be attached to the
certificate of merit that is served on the Attorney General.
(2) Neither the Attorney General, a district attorney, a city
attorney, nor a prosecutor has commenced and is diligently
prosecuting an action against the violation.
(e) A person bringing an action in the public interest pursuant to
subdivision (d) and a person filing an action in which a violation
of this chapter is alleged shall notify the Attorney General that the
action has been filed. Neither this subdivision nor the procedures
provided in subdivisions (f) to (k), inclusive, affect the
requirements imposed by statute or a court decision in existence on
January 1, 2002, concerning whether a person filing an action in
which a violation of this chapter is alleged is required to comply
with the requirements of subdivision (d).
(f) (1) A person filing an action in the public interest pursuant
to subdivision (d), a private person filing an action in which a
violation of this chapter is alleged, or a private person settling a
violation of this chapter alleged in a notice given pursuant to
paragraph (1) of subdivision (d), shall, after the action or
violation is subject either to a settlement or to a judgment, submit
to the Attorney General a reporting form that includes the results of
that settlement or judgment and the final disposition of the case,
even if dismissed. At the time of the filing of a judgment pursuant
to an action brought in the public interest pursuant to subdivision
(d), or an action brought by a private person in which a violation of
this chapter is alleged, the plaintiff shall file an affidavit
verifying that the report required by this subdivision has been
accurately completed and submitted to the Attorney General.
(2) A person bringing an action in the public interest pursuant to
subdivision (d), or a private person bringing an action in which a
violation of this chapter is alleged, shall, after the action is
either subject to a settlement, with or without court approval, or to
a judgment, submit to the Attorney General a report that includes
information on any corrective action being taken as a part of the
settlement or resolution of the action.
(3) The Attorney General shall develop a reporting form that
specifies the information that shall be reported, including, but not
limited to, for purposes of subdivision (e), the date the action was
filed, the nature of the relief sought, and for purposes of this
subdivision, the amount of the settlement or civil penalty assessed,
other financial terms of the settlement, and any other information
the Attorney General deems appropriate.
(4) If there is a settlement of an action brought by a person in
the public interest under subdivision (d), the plaintiff shall submit
the settlement, other than a voluntary dismissal in which no
consideration is received from the defendant, to the court for
approval upon noticed motion, and the court may approve the
settlement only if the court makes all of the following findings:
(A) The warning that is required by the settlement complies with
(B) The award of attorney's fees is reasonable under California
(C) The penalty amount is reasonable based on the criteria set
forth in paragraph (2) of subdivision (b).
(5) The plaintiff subject to paragraph (4) has the burden of
producing evidence sufficient to sustain each required finding. The
plaintiff shall serve the motion and all supporting papers on the
Attorney General, who may appear and participate in a proceeding
without intervening in the case.
(6) Neither this subdivision nor the procedures provided in
subdivision (e) and subdivisions (g) to (k), inclusive, affect the
requirements imposed by statute or a court decision in existence on
January 1, 2002, concerning whether claims raised by a person or
public prosecutor not a party to the action are precluded by a
settlement approved by the court.
(g) The Attorney General shall maintain a record of the
information submitted pursuant to subdivisions (e) and (f) and shall
make this information available to the public.
(h) (1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), the basis for the
certificate of merit required by subdivision (d) is not discoverable.
However, nothing in this subdivision precludes the discovery of
information related to the certificate of merit if that information
is relevant to the subject matter of the action and is otherwise
discoverable, solely on the ground that it was used in support of the
certificate of merit.
(2) Upon the conclusion of an action brought pursuant to
subdivision (d) with respect to a defendant, if the trial court
determines that there was no actual or threatened exposure to a
listed chemical, the court may, upon the motion of that alleged
violator or upon the court's own motion, review the basis for the
belief of the person executing the certificate of merit, expressed in
the certificate of merit, that an exposure to a listed chemical had
occurred or was threatened. The information in the certificate of
merit, including the identity of the persons consulted with and
relied on by the certifier, and the facts, studies, or other data
reviewed by those persons, shall be disclosed to the court in an
in-camera proceeding at which the moving party shall not be present.
If the court finds that there was no credible factual basis for the
certifier's belief that an exposure to a listed chemical had occurred
or was threatened, then the action shall be deemed frivolous within
the meaning of Section 128.7 of the Code of Civil Procedure. The
court shall not find a factual basis credible on the basis of a legal
theory of liability that is frivolous within the meaning of Section
128.7 of the Code of Civil Procedure.
(i) The Attorney General may provide the factual information
submitted to establish the basis of the certificate of merit on
request to a district attorney, city attorney, or prosecutor within
whose jurisdiction the violation is alleged to have occurred, or to
any other state or federal government agency, but in all other
respects the Attorney General shall maintain, and ensure that all
recipients maintain, the submitted information as confidential
official information to the full extent authorized in Section 1040 of
the Evidence Code.
(j) In an action brought by the Attorney General, a district
attorney, a city attorney, or a prosecutor pursuant to this chapter,
the Attorney General, district attorney, city attorney, or prosecutor
may seek and recover costs and attorney's fees on behalf of a party
who provides a notice pursuant to subdivision (d) and who renders
assistance in that action.
(k) Any person who serves a notice of alleged violation pursuant
to paragraph (1) of subdivision (d) for an exposure identified in
subparagraph (A), (B), (C), or (D) of paragraph (1) shall complete,
as appropriate, and provide to the alleged violator at the time the
notice of alleged violation is served, a notice of special compliance
procedure and proof of compliance form pursuant to subdivision (l)
and shall not file an action for that exposure against the alleged
violator, or recover from the alleged violator in a settlement any
payment in lieu of penalties or any reimbursement for costs and
attorney's fees, if all of the following conditions have been met:
(1) The notice given pursuant to paragraph (1) of subdivision (d)
was served on or after the effective date of the act amending this
section during the 2013-14 Regular Session and alleges that the
alleged violator failed to provide clear and reasonable warning as
required under Section 25249.6 regarding one or more of the
(A) An exposure to alcoholic beverages that are consumed on the
alleged violator's premises to the extent onsite consumption is
permitted by law.
(B) An exposure to a chemical known to the state to cause cancer
or reproductive toxicity in a food or beverage prepared and sold on
the alleged violator's premises primarily intended for immediate
consumption on or off premises, to the extent of both of the
(i) The chemical was not intentionally added.
(ii) The chemical was formed by cooking or similar preparation of
food or beverage components necessary to render the food or beverage
palatable or to avoid microbiological contamination.
(C) An exposure to environmental tobacco smoke caused by entry of
persons (other than employees) on premises owned or operated by the
alleged violator where smoking is permitted at any location on the
(D) An exposure to chemicals known to the state to cause cancer or
reproductive toxicity in engine exhaust, to the extent the exposure
occurs inside a facility owned or operated by the alleged violator
and primarily intended for parking noncommercial vehicles.
(2) Within 14 days after service of the notice, the alleged
violator has done all of the following:
(A) Corrected the alleged violation.
(B) (i) Agreed to pay a civil penalty for the alleged violation of
Section 25496.6 in the amount of five hundred dollars ($500), to be
adjusted quinquennially pursuant to clause (ii), per facility or
premises where the alleged violation occurred, of which 75 percent
shall be deposited in the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement
Fund, and 25 percent shall be paid to the person that served the
notice as provided in Section 25249.12.
(ii) On April 1, 2019, and at each five-year interval thereafter,
the dollar amount of the civil penalty provided pursuant to this
subparagraph shall be adjusted by the Judicial Council based on the
change in the annual California Consumer Price Index for All Urban
Consumers, published by the Department of Industrial Relations,
Division of Labor Statistics, for the most recent five-year period
ending on December 31 of the year preceding the year in which the
adjustment is made, rounded to the nearest five dollars ($5). The
Judicial Council shall quinquennially publish the dollar amount of
the adjusted civil penalty provided pursuant to this subparagraph,
together with the date of the next scheduled adjustment.
(C) Notified, in writing, the person that served the notice of the
alleged violation, that the violation has been corrected. The
written notice shall include the notice of special compliance
procedure and proof of compliance form specified in subdivision (l),
which was provided by the person serving notice of the alleged
violation and which shall be completed by the alleged violator as
directed in the notice.
(3) The alleged violator shall deliver the civil penalty to the
person that served the notice of the alleged violation within 30 days
of service of that notice, and the person that served the notice of
violation shall remit the portion of the penalty due to the Safe
Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Fund within 30 days of receipt
of the funds from the alleged violator.
(l) The notice required to be provided to an alleged violator
pursuant to subdivision (k) shall be presented as follows:
For purposes of this chapter:
(a) "Person" means an individual, trust, firm, joint stock
company, corporation, company, partnership, limited liability
company, and association.
(b) "Person in the course of doing business" does not include any
person employing fewer than 10 employees in his or her business; any
city, county, or district or any department or agency thereof or the
state or any department or agency thereof or the federal government
or any department or agency thereof; or any entity in its operation
of a public water system as defined in Section 116275.
(c) "Significant amount" means any detectable amount except an
amount which would meet the exemption test in subdivision (c) of
Section 25249.10 if an individual were exposed to such an amount in
(d) "Source of drinking water" means either a present source of
drinking water or water which is identified or designated in a water
quality control plan adopted by a regional board as being suitable
for domestic or municipal uses.
(e) "Threaten to violate" means to create a condition in which
there is a substantial probability that a violation will occur.
(f) "Warning" within the meaning of Section 25249.6 need not be
provided separately to each exposed individual and may be provided by
general methods such as labels on consumer products, inclusion of
notices in mailings to water customers, posting of notices, placing
notices in public news media, and the like, provided that the warning
accomplished is clear and reasonable. In order to minimize the
burden on retail sellers of consumer products including foods,
regulations implementing Section 25249.6 shall to the extent
practicable place the obligation to provide any warning materials
such as labels on the producer or packager rather than on the retail
seller, except where the retail seller itself is responsible for
introducing a chemical known to the state to cause cancer or
reproductive toxicity into the consumer product in question.