Leila C. Bruderer


Clients look to Leila Bruderer to assist them with navigating complex environmental matters and obtaining positive results.

With more than 12 years of experience as an environmental litigator and compliance attorney, Leila advises clients involved in environmental litigation matters, including complex multi-party lawsuits, CERCLA cost recovery actions, allocation litigation, government enforcement actions, toxic tort defense, and RCRA enforcement actions.

Leila uses her depth of knowledge in California and federal hazardous waste laws and regulations to counsel clients on issues related to obtaining site closure and permits, developing hazardous waste management programs, compliance audits, and environmental diligence. She employs her breadth of knowledge regarding California Proposition 65 enforcement and compliance to assist clients in negotiating resolution of Proposition 65 enforcement actions, and in developing systems to ensure compliance. She also has experience negotiating with federal and state environmental agencies on behalf of her clients in the context of hazardous waste management, air quality, soil, and groundwater cleanup.

Professional, Community And Pro Bono Involvement

  • California Manufacturers & Technology Association, 2017-present
  • ABA Environmental Litigation Committee, Women Environmental Lawyers Subcommittee, Co-Chair, 2016-present
  • Sacramento County Bar Association, Environmental Law Section, 2010-present
  • California State Bar, Environmental Law Section, 2006-present
  • Lilliput Children’s Services, Board Member, 2011-present; Board Chair, 2018; Immediate Past Board Chair, 2019
  • Loyola of Los Angeles Law Review, Articles Editor

Honors & Rankings

  • Sacramento Magazine, Top Lawyer, Environmental, 2017
  • San Diego Harbor Litigation and Sediment Remediation – Regulatory and litigation counsel to a shipyard in multi-million dollar parallel administrative and federal court proceedings, including cost recovery and allocation litigation.  The administrative proceedings involve a Cleanup and Abatement Order for the largest proposed sediment remediation project in the San Diego Bay, and the first site where the Regional Board required an EIR.
  • TCE Plume Liability Allocation – Counsel to PRP group in mediation to establish liability for TCE plume, and minimize potential allocation to PRP group members. Representation includes the management of relationship of PRP group members with Regional Board, and other interested entities.
  • Prop 65 Litigation – Assists clients in negotiating fair and reasonable settlements of Prop 65 actions, and advises clients on achieving compliance with Prop 65’s requirements.
  • MTBE Litigation – Successfully settled multiple MTBE lawsuits against an owner/operator of gas stations and distributor of gasoline filed by state enforcement agency and water purveyors in multiple jurisdictions.
  • Toxic Tort Lawsuit – Successfully defended a rocket manufacturer against toxic tort claims for groundwater contamination resulting from historical operations.  Managed experts, assisted in drafting of motion to dismiss certain of plaintiffs’ experts, and prepared oral argument on various expert motions
  • California Department of Fish & Wildlife Litigation – Successfully obtained dismissal of action brought by district attorney against rancher for violations of the California Fish and Game Code.
  • Hazardous Waste Enforcement – Litigator representing major retailer in federal and state enforcement action under RCRA and California hazardous waste laws.  Assisted in development of hazardous waste program at retailer’s locations, and conducted compliance audits of the program.
  • Hazardous Waste Compliance – Assisted grocery chain in achieving compliance with the federal and California hazardous waste regulations at its facilities, and implementing standard operating procedures for employee management and handling of hazardous materials and hazardous wastes.
  • Hazardous Waste Cleanup – Assisting public agency in finding means to deal with municipal waste landfill containing hazardous levels of lead that allows larger State project to proceed, including working with and coordinating multiple state agencies with an interest in the site at issue.
  • EPA RMP Enforcement Action – Assist large crude oil transportation company in negotiation of notice of violation issued by EPA under the Clean Air Act Process Safety Management Standards, and related assistance with public relations issues surrounding site of company’s facility.
  • Mercury Thermostat Enforcement – As part of larger PRP group, successfully negotiated consent order with the Department of Toxic Substances Control resolving client’s alleged violation of the mercury thermostat collection requirements.  Worked cooperatively with PRP group to select a consultant to implement obligation in consent order.
  • EPA FIFRA Enforcement Action – Assist mid-size fertilizer and pesticide retailer/distributor in negotiation of notice of violation issued by EPA under FIFRA for the alleged sale of an unregistered pesticide.

State and Local Enforcement

  • Assisted client in submitting comments on draft cleanup and abatement order to Regional Water Quality Control Board, and in successfully arguing for removal of client from the order.
  • Represented cement company in negotiations with local CUPA over alleged violations at cement facility in Southern California.
  • Successfully negotiated agreement to share expenses for cleanup of contaminated site for newspaper corporation where client was named as a responsible party by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources for historical contamination.
  • Assisted electronic waste recycler to obtain greatest reimbursement from CalRecycle for claims submitted, and in seeking repayment of monies paid to electronic waste collectors, where those collectors documentation was denied by CalRecycle.
  • Successfully negotiated settlement with the California Department of Pesticide Regulation on behalf of grocer for sale of an improperly labeled product, and subsequent pursuit of manufacturer for reimbursement.
  • Assisted beverage manufacturer in negotiations with local CUPA over alleged hazardous waste violations at manufacturing facility.


  • Advised a technology company regarding Department of Toxic Substances Control Site Closure Decision, and asserting a challenge to that decision.
  • Advised a major port operator regarding environmental conditions in potential transaction.
  • Advised biomass facilities regarding management of waste streams generated in operations, and use of certain waste streams for agricultural purposes.
  • Advised aerospace company regarding whether use of certain equipment in its operations was in compliance with RCRA and California hazardous waste regulations
  • Advised cement company regarding potential strategies to achieve compliance with Mercury NESHAP in a manner that is also in compliance with RCRA and California hazardous waste regulations.
  • Conducted environmental audit for electronic waste handler and advised on best practices for electronic waste management.
  • Advised a manufacturer regarding alleged violation of hazardous waste laws, finding appropriate exceptions to enable manufacturer to avoid being categorized as a hazardous waste generator.
  • Advised eye glass manufacturer as part of transaction to sell former manufacturing facility.
  • Advised agricultural trade association regarding compliance with the Food Safety Modernization Act (“FSMA”)
  • Advised agricultural cooperative regarding compliance with FSMA for itself and member entitites.
  • Created hazardous waste toolkit for grocery trade association and trained members on how to use the toolkit to create a hazardous waste program at their facilities.

In the News

1 related items

Press Releases

3 related items

Speaking Engagements / Events

4 related items

Legal Alerts

32 related items


7 related items

Leila serves as the Board Chair of a local charity, Lilliput Children’s Services.  Leila’s experience in representing families in Los Angeles in completing their adoptions gave her a sense of the impact the adoption of a child can have on so many people, including the children.  That is what drew Leila to Lilliput’s mission of finding a permanent home for children from the moment they first enter the foster care system.  Leila dedicates her time and energy to each of Lilliput’s fundraising events to ensure that Lilliput has the funds necessary for its kinship program, which focuses on placing foster children with family members.  Now that Leila has a daughter of her own, she understands even more the importance of family in each child’s life.

Leila has substantial expertise helping clients navigate the compliance and litigation challenges posed by California’s Proposition 65.

Leila provides strategic compliance advice and litigation defense to manufacturers, distributors, and retailers from various industries both inside and outside of California subject to Proposition 65’s requirements. Her goal is to help clients understand the risks to their businesses posed by Proposition 65 and to develop strategies to manage those risks in a way that is both protective and effective while still operating a profitable business. She uses her proximity to key agencies and stakeholders to advance her client’s interests by working closely with those agencies and with trade groups on regulatory issues and reforms related to Proposition 65 and its impacts on the business community. She also takes an active role in staying abreast of all of the new Proposition 65 developments, whether they be regulatory, legislative or judicial.


Compliance Experience

Leila helps businesses develop a Proposition 65 compliance program using her in-depth knowledge of the Proposition 65 regulations. She uses her expertise to help a client shape their compliance program to their business model in a way that both enables the client to achieve compliance and to operate successfully in California. In addition, she works extensively with consultants to help clients determine whether they have compliance obligations for the products they sell in California.

  • Large Manufacturer, Distributor & Retailer – Counseled a large company that had divisions that wore different hats, including manufacturer, distributor and retailer, to develop a compliance program to achieve compliance with the new Proposition 65 warning regulations for all divisions of the company operating in California.  Provided strategic advice that helped the company to understand where it had the greatest exposure, and to address those areas of its business model.
  • Manufacturers – Assisted large manufacturer with no operations in California, but whose products are incorporated by others into finished products sold in California regarding their Proposition 65 obligations, and how to achieve compliance.
  • Retailers/Grocers – Counsel to numerous retailers and grocers in helping them develop compliance programs that recognize their unique position in the Proposition 65 world, including understanding when they hold the bag for Proposition 65 liability, and when they should be relying upon their vendors and suppliers.  Developed indemnification language for these clients, as well as notices to vendors and suppliers regarding Proposition 65 obligations.
  • Distributors/Retailers – Advised businesses who are both distributors and retailers of products sold in California on how to comply with the new Proposition 65 warning regulations (effective August 30, 2018) for the products they distribute and sell to consumers both on-line and in brick and mortar stores.

Litigation & Citizen Suit Defense

Leila has defended and resolved numerous Proposition 65 citizen suit matters, from the pre-litigation notice phase through formal litigation when necessary. She has experience with many of the most prevalent plaintiff citizen suit groups operating in the Proposition 65 space. She works with experts to develop analyses and exposure assessments to fight back against plaintiff’s Proposition 65 claims and is well versed in the scientific arguments that win Proposition 65 litigation matters.

  • Children’s Product Litigation – Represented a children’s product manufacturer in Proposition 65 litigation and successfully resolved the litigation via consent judgment saving the client expensive litigation fees, and negotiating workable injunctive relief.
  • Baby Food Amicus Brief – Filed an amicus brief on behalf of agricultural interests in Proposition 65 litigation over metals in baby food and juices.
  • Assisted various businesses to successfully defend against Proposition 65 enforcement by private enforcers using the small business exemption to Prop 65, as well as by marshaling the facts to convince the plaintiff to abandon enforcement.
  • Assisted various businesses in negotiating fair and reasonable settlements of Proposition 65 actions either pre-litigation or via consent judgment.

Professional, Community And Pro Bono Involvement

  • California Manufacturers & Technology Association, 2017-present
  • ABA Environmental Litigation Committee, Women Environmental Lawyers Subcommittee, Co-Chair, 2016-present
  • Sacramento County Bar Association, Environmental Law Section, 2010-present
  • California State Bar, Environmental Law Section, 2006-present
  • Lilliput Children’s Services, Board Member, 2011-present; Board Chair, 2018; Immediate Past Board Chair, 2019
  • Loyola of Los Angeles Law Review, Articles Editor

Honors & Rankings

  • Sacramento Magazine, Top Lawyer, Environmental, 2017