CJAC: Civil Justice Association of California

Assembly Bill 696

The Civil Justice Association of California supports AB 696, a bill that will allow project applicants who must prepare an environmental impact report required by the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) to agree to resolve disputes with the lead agency through arbitration rather than through litigation, provided the lead agency agrees.

Arbitration brings cases to resolution faster and at less overall expense to both parties than traditional litigation. Although CJAC is not aware of any studies of arbitration in the context of environmental law, studies from other areas of law shed light on the utility of arbitration.

For example, a Stanford Law Review empirical study of arbitration in employment law concluded that from the employee's point of view, arbitration yields roughly the same result as litigation, but is much faster.

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