LBAC PREVAILS IN A PUBLISHED APPELLATE OPINION REVERSING AN ADVERSE RULING AGAINST THE COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES ON THE CALIFORNIA PUBLIC RECORDS ACT (PRA)

In July 2015, the Los Angeles County Superior Court ordered the County of Los Angeles to disclose approximately 215,000 CHP 180 Reports generated since 2012. The CHP 180 Reports were prepared by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department to document the impoundment of vehicles driven by unlicensed drivers. The reports contained personal information about the legal owners of the vehicles. The County of Los Angeles requested LBAC to seek appellate review of this order. After oral argument by Jin S. Choi before Justices Baker, Kriegler, and Mosk, the California Court of Appeal issued a writ of mandate directing the Superior Court to set aside its order and enter a new order prohibiting disclosure of the 215,000 CHP 180 Reports. In the unanimous published opinion, the Court of Appeal held that the CHP 180 Reports were exempt from disclosure under Government Code § 6254(k) because Government Code § 6254.1, Vehicle Code § 1808.21, and the Driver’s Privacy Protection Act prohibit the disclosure of personal information contained in DMV records. County of Los Angeles v. Superior Court (Anderson-Barker), 242 Cal.App.4th 475 (2015).