Of Counsel Elizabeth G. Chilton specializes exclusively in appellate litigation. Over the past 40 years, she has handled hundreds of appeals and writ proceedings in the California courts of appeal, the California Supreme Court and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit as well as other federal appellate courts.
Beth has argued or briefed intellectual property disputes, insurance coverage matters, legal malpractice cases and employment litigation, including claims of sexual harassment and discrimination, wrongful termination and questions of bankruptcy, probate, divorce, child custody, paternity, entertainment, administrative, real estate, environmental, tax and commercial law.
In her practice, Beth:
- Consults with trial counsel during trial and in post-trial proceedings to ensure that arguments and a proper record are preserved for appeal
- Analyzes the record on appeal and the relevant law to develop the most persuasive arguments, refining those arguments with trial counsel and the client
- Researches and drafts all appellate filings, including appellate motions; appellate briefs; writ petitions, returns, and replies; and requests for stay
- Handles oral argument
- Develops and implements strategies for pursuing or defending further appellate proceedings following issuance of the opinion, including petitions for rehearing, petitions for review, and requests for publication or depublication of appellate opinions
Beth’s notable appellate matters include:
- Dylan v. Superior Court (unpublished order, 2023): Obtained a peremptory writ in the first instance requiring a trial court judge to comply with California’s new laws extending the time to file sexual assault claims, allowing our client to proceed with their claims.
- Palombo v. Superior Court (unpublished decision, 2022): Obtained reversal of a trial court order requiring an elderly Italian citizen to appear in a California court, agreeing that our client did not have sufficient contacts with California to establish jurisdiction over her.
- Rice v. Downs, 73 Cal.App.5th 213 (2021): In a case of first impression, the Court of Appeal held that a security interest that our client had perfected by filing a UCC-1 with the California Secretary of State had priority over a charging order issued by a trial court, reversing an order requiring our client to disgorge the funds it had received pursuant to its security interest.
- Knapp v. Ginsberg, 67 Cal.App.5th 504 (2021): In a case of first impression, the Court of Appeal held that a premarital agreement executed in violation of Family Code § 1615 was void rather than merely voidable, allowing our client to pursue a malpractice claim against the attorney who prepared the unenforceable agreement.
- Leadership Academy, Inc. v. Prang, 46 Cal.App.5th 270 (2020): In a case of first impression, the Court of Appeal held that nonprofit charter schools are not entitled to the property tax exemptions afforded to public schools, affirming that our client, the County of Los Angeles, had correctly assessed the property taxes owed by the charter schools and the schools were not entitled to refunds.
- Time Warner Cable, Inc. v. County of Los Angeles (unpublished decision, 2018): In a refund action by Time Warner Cable contesting the valuation of its possessory interests in public rights of way, the Court of Appeal ruled that our client, the County of Los Angeles, had correctly included broadband and telephone revenue in its valuation rather than relying solely on Time Warner’s cable television franchise fee, a ruling with significant tax implications because those revenue streams, not cable television, are such companies’ primary areas of growth.
- Stevens v. Styne, 26 Cal.4th 42 (2001): In a case of first impression involving interpretation and application of the California law requiring the licensing of talent agents, the California Supreme Court held that there is no statute of limitations on an entertainer’s use of the statute as a defense against the claims of unlicensed talent agents, entitling our client to assert the defense and ultimately settle the matter without payment.
Co-Author, “Progress Marches On: Trying Complex Civil Cases, Then and Now,” Patricia L. Glaser and Elizabeth G. Chilton, Gavel to Gavel (the Los Angeles Superior Court judicial magazine), Fall 2010
University of California, Los Angeles School of Law, J.D., Order of the Coif
University of California, Los Angeles, B.A., History, summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa