Matthew B. Nazareth
Matthew Nazareth is Of Counsel in the Trial and Litigation Practice Group. He participates in all aspects of litigation in California state and federal courts, as well as appeals in the California Courts of Appeal and Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. His litigation experience includes defense of class actions, coordinated proceedings, and serving as second chair at trials.
Matthew has handled litigation matters in a variety of areas of substantive law, including catastrophic disasters, First Amendment, Brown Act compliance, inverse condemnation, breach of contract, residential and commercial real estate, unfair competition law, trade secret misappropriation, FDCPA, ERISA, discrimination, independent contractor misclassification, Americans with Disabilities Act, and the Lanterman Developmental Disabilities Act. He has also advised and counseled on employment law issues, including employee handbooks, wage and hour, hiring, and termination issues.
Matthew handles pre-trial litigation, all aspects of discovery, pre-trial and dispositive motion practice, mediation and settlement conferences, and trial. In addition, Matthew handles appellate litigation, with experience in California and federal courts, petitions for writ of mandate, petitions for supersedeas, and merits briefing in the California Supreme Court.
Matthew also worked in the Federal Pro Se Clinic of Public Counsel of Los Angeles, where he performed intake and gave procedural advice to pro se litigants and conducted settlement conferences. After graduating from law school, Matthew clerked for Chief Magistrate Judge Suzanne H. Segal of the District Court for the Central District of California.
- Represent the County of San Bernardino in a matter involving the need to employ quo warranto and its companion procedural steps when a challenge is made to the County Board of Supervisors decision on filling a vacant Board seat and related Brown Act issues. In this matter, the County had thirty days over the end-of-year holidays to fill a seat after the prior supervisor was elected to the State Assembly. A politically motivated union challenged the appointment process under the Ralph M. Brown Act via a writ proceeding. On February 19, 2020, the California Supreme Court accepted the County’s petition for review. The Court’s decision will examine whether quo warranto is the exclusive means to challenge the appointment or if a writ of mandate can be employed.
- Represent the County of Santa Barbara in a dispute with Southern California Edison (SCE) regarding potential liability for the 2017 Thomas Fire and subsequent Montecito debris flow. SCE sued various public entities alleging that “negligent acts and omissions of the public entities” contributed to or exacerbated the injuries, deaths and multi-million dollar losses incurred by plaintiffs that are suing SCE for causing the fire. The matter includes 200 lawsuits, 3000 plaintiffs, and 70 plaintiff law firms asserting billions of dollars of liability against the County.
- Represented the City of Walnut Creek and the City of Riverside in federal ADA litigation regarding shared mobility devices (electric scooters and electric bicycles) in the public rights of way. Plaintiffs alleged that shared mobility device users ride too fast and improperly park or ride the devices in the public pedestrian rights of way, and that shared mobility devices obstruct access on sidewalks, crosswalks and curb ramps. Successfully obtained dismissals of both public entities at the early stage of two separate federal proceedings through motions to dismiss filed in the Northern and Central Districts.
- Represented private employer in a case involving age discrimination brought by a former independent contractor. Plaintiff sought over $8 million in compensatory damages and additional punitive damages. Obtained defense verdict after 7-week jury trial.
Presentations and Publications
- Author, “U.S. Supreme Court Overturns California’s Ban on Indoor Religious Services but Leaves Open Singing/Chanting Ban,” Meyers Nave Client Alert, February 9, 2021
- Author, “Shelter In Place Litigation Update: Ninth Circuit Affirms California’s Temporary Restrictions on Indoor Worship Services While Invalidating 100/200 Person Numerical Caps,” Meyers Nave Client Alert, January 29, 2021
- Author, “SCOTUS Blocks New York’s COVID-19 Limits on Houses of Worship: California is Next for SCOTUS with Harvest Rock Church v. Newsom,” Meyers Nave Client Alert, November 30, 2020
- New York University, School of LawJD, 2011
- University of California at Los AngelesBA, Political Science, 2008