Sarah Esmaili focuses on litigation defending clients in California Proposition 65, consumer protection, and class action cases. She has represented companies in failure to warn claims involving a wide range of consumer product and service industries. She often handles cases involving newly emerging chemical exposure claims where she works with experts in the fields of toxicology and epidemiology. She has experience in joint representation of companies in cases that concern issues of industry-wide significance and has represented industry groups as plaintiffs in litigation that challenges regulations. She has expertise in developing creative settlement solutions that are tailored to business objectives. Ms. Esmaili's practice also includes counseling companies with respect to a variety of regulatory product safety laws.

Ms. Esmaili has experience in all phases of litigation. She participated in the San Francisco District Attorney's volunteer program where she successfully prosecuted several jury trials.

Ms. Esmaili has handled significant pro bono matters. Her experience includes developing and preparing a petition for habeas corpus in a death penalty case where she managed a team of attorneys and which resulted in the California Supreme Court issuing an order for further proceedings based on juror misconduct claims. She has also successfully handled political asylum cases. She's the recipient of the Keta Taylor Colby Pro Bono Award.


  • Six national restaurant companies in defeating claims that Proposition 65 warnings are required on grilled chicken products, which led to a published appellate decision in favor of restaurant companies.
  • Trade associations in drafting comment letters for proposed Proposition 65 regulations.
  • Company in Proposition 65 case brought by the California Attorney General and various California District Attorneys seeking warnings for lead in molasses-containing cookies.
  • Company in bankruptcy proceeding as appointed special counsel for Proposition 65 claim.
  • Automotive industry association in declaratory relief action challenging California Air Resources Board regulations.
  • Major restaurant company in defeating class action lawsuit seeking warnings for grilled chicken products.
  • Protein supplement manufacturer in preparing and presenting expert testimony to obtain court approval of a groundbreaking Proposition 65 settlement, which served as the model for settlements in subsequent claims involving similar products.
  • Companies in complex litigation involving alleged exposures to lead in dietary supplements.


Prop 65: Recent Developments
Webinar, Law Over Lunch, Food and Drug Law Institute
State Law Regulations and Litigation
Panelist, 5th Annual Food Law Conference, San Francisco, CA
California's Proposition 65: Regulatory, Compliance and Litigation Developments for Cannabis Products Including Hemp and CBD
Speaker, American Herbal Products Association Webinar
Pitfalls to Avoid When Testing Products or Relying on Previous Consent Judgments
Panelist, Proposition 65 Clearinghouse Conference, San Francisco, CA
Compelled Commercial Speech and First Amendment Issues
ABA, Section of Litigation Products Liability Committee, 9th Annual Food and Supplements CLE Workshop, Chicago, IL


The Legal 500 US
"Rising Star"–Product Liability, Mass Tort and Class Action - Defense: Consumer Products (Including Tobacco) (2020)
"Rising Star"–Environment: Litigation (2020)
"Next Generation Lawyer" – Environment: Litigation (2017-2019)
Keta Taylor Colby Pro Bono Award
Recognition of her service to the disadvantaged


  • JD, Georgetown University Law Center, 1999, cum laude
  • BA, University of Wisconsin, 1995, with highest honors, Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society
  • California
  • US District Court, Central District of California
  • US District Court, Eastern District of California
  • US District Court, Northern District of California
  • Spanish

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