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.


California Proposition 65 Update on Regulatory, Compliance, and Litigation Developments
AHPA Webinar
California Proposition 65
Safer Chemicals in Products 2018, Boston, MA
From the Boardroom to the Ballot: How Three Successful Businesswomen Were Inspired to Seek Elective Office
Arnold & Porter WomenConnect Program, San Francisco, CA
Prop 65 Developments: Litigation Trends and What Has Been the Economic as well as Public Health Impact of Prop 65?
American Conference Institute's Food Law Conference, Chicago, IL
Ingredient Safety Track: Proposition 65
GMA Science Forum, Washington, DC


The Legal 500 US
"Next Generation Lawyer" – Environment: Litigation (2017 and 2018)
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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