Hon. Thomas Warriner (Ret.)


Judge Warriner is a dedicated public servant with an accomplished legal career spanning five decades. After graduating from UCLA School of Law, Judge Warriner joined the California Department of Justice as Deputy Attorney General. He then worked as Deputy Director and Chief Counsel for the California Department of Health, before returning to the Department of Justice to serve as Senior Assistant Attorney General. He later headed one of the largest public agencies of the State of California as Undersecretary and General Counsel of the California Health and Welfare Agency, serving in this capacity until his appointment to the bench in 1990.

As a Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Yolo, Judge Warriner handled a great variety of civil matters and presided over all trial court assignments, including civil, criminal, juvenile, family, and probate. Since 2010, he has continued to serve in the Assigned Judges Program at the direction of the Chief Justice, presiding over court and jury trials in the counties of Solano, Napa, Yolo, Sacramento, Placer, El Dorado, San Joaquin, Tahama, Shasta, and Butte.

Judge Warriner joined ADR Services, Inc. in 2019 as a full-time mediator, arbitrator, and referee. He is available to conduct hearings in all counties across Northern California with no additional travel fees.


  • Business & Commercial Contract
  • Employment
  • CEQA / Environmental
  • Land Use
  • Proposition 65
  • Personal Injury
  • Professional Liability
  • Probate, Estates & Trusts
  • Family Law
  • Cannabis Disputes


Judge, State of California, Assigned Judges Program     2010-2018

  • Presided over court and jury trials in the counties of Solano, Napa, Yolo, Sacramento, Placer, El Dorado, San Joaquin, Tahama, Shasta, and Butte

Judge, Superior Court of California, County of Yolo     1990-2010

  • Appointed in March 1990 and elected in subsequent elections
  • Handled a great variety of civil matters in all of the trial court assignments, including civil, criminal, juvenile, family, and probate


State of California, Health and Welfare Agency     1985-1990

  • Undersecretary and General Counsel (1985-1990)

State of California, Department of Justice, Office of the Attorney General     1968-1985

  • Senior Assistant Attorney General (1979-1985)
  • Deputy Attorney General (1969-1973 and 1974-1979)

State of California, Department of Health     1973-1974

  • Deputy Director and Chief Counsel (1973-1974)


Served from Private to Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army Reserve     1966-1972

  • Trained as a Combat Medic in the U.S. Army and assigned to several locations


  • J.D., University of California at Los Angeles, School of Law     1967
  • B.A., University of California at Los Angeles     1964


  • Graduate, “STAR: A Systematic Approach to Mediation Strategies”, Straus Institute     2018
  • Participant, Brookings Economic Institute for Judges     2005-2006
  • Graduate, Boardlink Program – a specialized training program for Board Members     2005


Professor, Glendale College of Law (Los Angeles) and Lincoln Law School (Sacramento)     1986-2012

  • Taught Introduction to the Study of Law, Real Property Law, Administrative Law and Remedies (Equity)


  • Member, Advisory Council of the National Institute of Environmental Health Science
  • Medi-Cal Therapeutic and Drug Advisory Committee
  • Governor’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Child Support Development and Enforcement
  • Trial Courts Budget Committee
  • State Bar of California
  • California Judges Association (CJA)
  • Member, CJA Cultural and Educational Mission to the Republic of South Africa (2012)
  • Yolo County Bar Association
  • Alliance of California Judges


Author, “Safe Drinking Water and the Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986,” Journal of the American Medical Association (1988)

Representative Cases


  • Civil proceeding to dissolve a partnership for the production of American Bison to be used for food and other uses. The partners were a local expert and a wealthy city resident. The partners’ different economic statuses and areas of expertise added to complexity.


  • Disputes between tenant (who wanted to sell cannabis) and the landlord over the legality of the lease in view of federal law.
  • Cannabis dispute involving location and operation of essential oils production facility.


  • Several cases involving interaction of state law (governing guardianships) and requirements of immigration law.
  • Case contrasting public assembly protections (right of assembly) of street gangs and efforts of a local city to impose a curfew via injunction.


  • Tort actions involving design decisions made by tire and car manufacturers.
  • Dealt with coordination of complex litigation such as one involving a church’s activities.


  • Many cases involving disputes between general and subcontractors working on projects built on the UC Davis campus.
  • Handled construction dispute cases involving various churches.


  • Several wrongful termination cases involving faculty and/or staff at UC Davis.
  • Wrongful termination case involving a senior law enforcement official who was fired and claimed that employer failed to make reasonable accommodation for his post prostate surgery status – frequent urination on short notice and need for occasional costume changes.
  • Several trials involving discipline taken against law enforcement officers in various counties in Northern California.


  • Responsible for creation of the Science Panel (Prop. 65) whose duty was to identify chemicals that cause cancer or birth defects.
  • Member in 1980s of Advisory Council of the National Institute of Environmental Health Science, a part of the National Institutes of Health, and responsible for approving government grants for scientific research.
  • Conducted various hearings to determine applicability of the California Environmental Quality Act’s (CEQA) statute of limitations.


  • Presenter at training program for members of the California Legal Specialties – Family Law (February 2019). Training focused on Dissolution of Marriage, Legal Separation or Nullity of Marriage Litigation – Opening Statements and Motions in Limine.
  • Mediated a family law matter wherein the parties agreed upon a method to assure full and fair accounting for all payments (base salary, bonuses, and gifts) made by grandparents to one of the parties (an adult child) who was employed full time in the large family business. Base salary and bonuses were to be used for child support calculations. Spousal support was agreed to be gradually reduced (pursuant to a schedule) to “0” by the time the parties’ children would be expected to start college.
  • Conducted family law trials in many Northern California counties dealing with custody, visitation, property and support.
  • Family Law case involving two serving members of the USAF assigned to the same case. Required the coordination of state DV orders and the reality of active military service.
  • Member of the Governors Blue Ribbon Commission on child support enforcement.


    • As Deputy Director and Chief Counsel of the state health department, Undersecretary of the Health and Welfare Agency, or Deputy/Senior Assistant Attorney General, drafted and/or enforced laws related to all state licensed health facilities.
    • Involved as client and litigator in various cases which sought to add drugs to the state list of drugs provided to MediCal recipients.


    • Dispute over roof on house. Resolved by compromise.


    • Handled on a weekly bases land use disputes between landlords and tenants.
    • Dispute between two adjoining landowners – one with a vineyard and one with a shopping center. Legal issue was the application of easement of necessity where one use was seasonal agricultural and the other high-end shopping center.
    • Called upon to decide controversial land use case involving vineyard, water use, road impacts, and endangered species in well known wine production area.
    • Dealt with several land use issues such as the expansion of diaries.


    • Handled dozens of disputes growing from injuries of one sort or another that occurred in neighbor disputes, slip and falls, and firearms.
    • Case seeking to limit use of robotic surgical system alleged to be defective and dangerous.
    • Variety of motor vehicle accident cases with issue of road design and construction, automobile design, and/or personal injury.


    • Probate Court assignment in several Northern California counties. Heard many cases involving medical issues, expert testimony, and accounting disputes. Often able to settle the disputes during the course of the hearing.
    • Handled several dozen probate, trust administration, and/or guardianship cases.


    • Frequently handled cases containing claims of legal malpractice, faulty construction design, or poor work by wine industry staff.
    • Presided over professional liability cases involving veterinary negligence in the treatment of horses or a failure to correctly inform the owner of the risks of surgery, as well as traditional medical malpractice cases.

    PROP 65

    • Worked with scientific community, various public interest groups, and industry leaders in developing required regulations. Participated in international conferences regarding the application of Prop. 65 to products entering California.
    • Picked by the California Governor to implement all phases of Prop 65 – Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986


    • Heard (and settled many) cases involving disputes between landlords and tenants of both commercial and residential properties.
    • Case addressing landlord oversight and management of retail property as between various store owners’ interests.