A. Joel Richlin Appointed as United States Magistrate Judge for the Central District of California

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The United States District Court for the Central District of California announces the appointment of A. Joel Richlin as a United States Magistrate Judge.  Judge Richlin, who was sworn in on July 31, 2023, will preside over matters in Los Angeles in the Court’s Western Division.  Judge Richlin succeeds former Magistrate Judge Alexander F. MacKinnon.

Before his appointment as a magistrate judge, Judge Richlin served as General Counsel and Chief Litigation Officer of Prime Healthcare, one of the nation’s largest hospital systems.  In that role, he led a national legal department of more than 30 attorneys and 19 support staff and was responsible for all litigation on behalf of the company’s hospitals and other business units, which included a real estate development firm and medical school.  Judge Richlin personally led and supervised litigation in 14 states before federal courts, state courts, administrative agencies, and arbitral forums on a wide range of subject matters including labor, employment, professional and general liability, as well as all manner of business disputes.   Judge Richlin represented the company’s business units as both plaintiff and defendant in single plaintiff, multi-party, and collective actions across the country, with a particular focus on complex healthcare regulatory and business disputes.  Judge Richlin is a recognized expert on healthcare regulatory matters and regularly speaks across the country on matters such as the False Claims Act, the Affordable Care Act, ERISA, Medicare, Medicaid, and managed care reimbursement.

From 2012 to 2017, Judge Richlin worked in the Los Angeles Office of international law firm, Foley & Lardner LLP, where he was a Senior Counsel in the Business Litigation Group.  There, Judge Richlin represented a wide variety of clients in business litigation, government investigations, and healthcare litigation matters, which included representation of both major health plans and hospitals systems across the country.  While at the firm, Judge Richlin maintained a robust pro bono practice and completed a secondment at the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office to gain first-chair jury trial experience.

From 2007 to 2012, Judge Richlin served as a law clerk to multiple federal judges.  He first clerked for the Honorable Alan M. Ahart of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California, next for the Honorable Fernando M. Olguin who was then a magistrate judge for the Court, and finally for the Honorable Suzanne H. Segal who was then the Court’s chief magistrate judge.  Following law school, from 2006 to 2007, Judge Richlin was an associate at an international law firm, Heller Ehrman LLP, in the Complex Commercial Litigation Group.

For the past 15 years, Judge Richlin has also served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at Loyola Law School, Los Angeles where he has taught various classes involving appellate brief writing and oral advocacy, as well as mentored law students interested in pursuing judicial clerkships.  Judge Richlin is active in several bar associations, including the American Health Law Association where he has served as a Vice Chair of Educational Programming and is currently a member of the Dispute Resolution Services Council.  Judge Richlin also serves on the Board of Directors and as a member of the Diversity Taskforce for the California Society for Healthcare Attorneys.  Additionally, Judge Richlin regularly speaks on topics related to increasing diversity in the legal profession.

Judge Richlin received his Bachelor of Arts degree, with honors, from Northwestern University in 2003, and his Juris Doctor degree, cum laude, from Loyola Law School, Los Angeles in 2006, where he was an editor of the Law Review.

Including the position now occupied by Judge Richlin, the Central District of California has 24 full-time and one part-time magistrate judge positions.  The Central District of California is comprised of the counties of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, Santa Barbara, and San Luis Obispo.  It serves more than 19.3 million people, nearly half the population of the State of California.