|Mitchell E. Abbott is Of Counsel in the Litigation Department at Richards, Watson &
Gershon and Chair of the Firm's Appellate Law Practice Group. Mr.
Abbott is currently one of fewer than 300 lawyers in the state designated
as a Certified Specialist in Appellate Law by the State Bar of California
Board of Legal Specialization. For more than 35 years, he has specialized
in the representation of municipalities and other public entities
in a variety of cases at both the trial and appellate level, and in
both the state and federal courts. He has handled many constitutional
cases arising under the First and Fourteenth Amendments to the federal
constitution, as well as land use cases and disputes arising under
the California Environmental Quality Act. Mr. Abbott has also handled
litigation and appeals in public financing cases, including validating
actions challenging the formation of redevelopment agencies and other
districts, taxpayers' actions challenging the validity and fairness
of local assessment districts, and a variety of other cases involving
challenges to local enactments under Propositions 13 and 218.
While at the University of Virginia Law School, he was Notes Editor
of the Virginia Journal of International Law. He is a contributing
author of the CEB treatises, California Civil Appellate Practice
(3d ed.); California Administrative Mandamus (3d ed); California
Civil Writ Practice (4th ed.); and California Civil Discovery
Practice (4th ed.). He is a consulting editor of Thomson-West’s
California Civil Practice regarding governmental immunities.
He has lectured widely on the subjects of Appellate Law, Writs,
Supreme Court Proceedings, the Public Records Act and Ethics.
Mr. Abbott is a member of the California Academy of Appellate Lawyers,
is a past Chair of the State Bar Board of Legal Specialization's
Appellate Law Advisory Committee, and is a past chair of the State
Bar of California's Committee on Appellate Courts. In 2011 he was appointed by the Board of Governors of the State Bar to a three-year term on the Board of Legal Specialization. He has
been listed in The Best Lawyers in America (2008-12 and 2016) and in
Southern California Superlawyers (2004-12 and 2016), both in the
field of Appellate Law.
In addition to his legal career, Mr. Abbott serves on the Board of Directors
of The Los Angeles Conservancy, is a former member of the Board of Directors of the
Congregational Foundation, and is a past Moderator of First Congregational
Church of Los Angeles. He was the recipient of the Spirit of C.E.B. award in 2010 for his contribution to California Continuing Education of the Bar and was honored by the Constitutional Rights Foundation in 2011 with the Justice James A. Cobey Mock Trial Attorney Coach of the Year Award.
A.B., magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa
University of California, Davis, 1972
J.D., University of Virginia