J. Scott Tiedemann

J. Scott Tiedemann Managing Partner

Scott Tiedemann is the Managing Partner of Liebert Cassidy Whitmore, California's largest education and public sector and non-profit labor and employment law firm.

Scott is perhaps best known as a leading advocate for, and trusted advisor to public safety agencies across California.  He is called upon in high profile cases to advise public safety executives regarding how to conduct complex investigations, manage media relations and navigate the procedural complexities of the Public Safety Officers and Firefighters Procedural Bill of Rights.  He has earned a reputation for successfully prosecuting many difficult cases involving allegations ranging from excessive force to sexual abuse to fraud.

Scott has prevailed in multiple published appellate cases that have helped public safety employers more effectively manage their employees.  His published decisions on behalf of public safety employers include, among others:  Upland Police Officers Association v. City of Upland (2003) 111 Cal.App.4th 1294, Benach v. County of Los Angeles (2007) 149 Cal.4th 836 and Thompson v. City of Monrovia (2010) 186 Cal.App.4th 860, Ferguson v. City of Cathedral City (2011) 197 Cal.App.4th 1161, County of Los Angeles v. Mendez (2017) 137 S.Ct. 1539; San Francisco Police Officers’ Assoc. v. San Francisco Police Comm. (2018) 27 Cal.App.5th 676.

Scott also represents a wide variety of other government agencies in labor and employment matters.  Scott serves as lead negotiator for multiple employers in collective bargaining with both safety and general employee bargaining units. 

Scott's practice also includes conducting complex investigations, counseling and management training.  He frequently speaks at national and statewide conferences, including the California Police Chiefs Association, the League of California Cities, and CalPELRA, on subjects such as disciplinary investigations, workplace harassment, employment discrimination, free speech, privacy and ethics.

Scott frequently is asked to lend his knowledge and expertise to other professional organizations.  He is General Counsel to the Los Angeles County Police Chiefs Association and previously served as Chair of the Southern California Police Legal Advisors Committee, Chair of the Labor Relations subcommittee on the dissolution of redevelopment agencies for the League of California Cities, and served on the Board of Advisors of the California Public Employee Relations (CPER) program. 

Scott authored the CPER Pocket Guide to the Firefighters Procedural Bill of Rights, is an editor of the CPER Pocket Guide to the Public Safety Officers Procedural Bill of Rights, and Chapter 8 (The Public Safety Officers and Firefighters Procedural Bill of Rights Acts) of California Public Sector Employment Law, State Bar of California/LexisNexis (2018).

Professional and Community Involvement

Scott serves as General Counsel of the Los Angeles County Police Chiefs Association and is a member in good standing of the California State Bar Labor & Employment Section.


Scott has continued to be recognized throughout his career including the following:

  • National Law Journal Crisis Leadership Trailblazer (2020)
  • Named a Southern California Super Lawyer, (2014-2020)
  • Top 75 Labor & Employment Lawyers, Daily Journal, (2013)
  • Named a Southern California Super Lawyers' Rising Stars(2010-2011)


  • BA, Loyola Marymount University

  • JD, Loyola Marymount University School of Law


Police Officer v. City (2019) – Hearing officer upheld the termination of a former police officer who prepared multiple false police reports. The police officer’s performance during a single incident led LCW to recommend an audit of other cases.  That audit, in turn, revealed additional cases and a pattern of fabricating subject confessions. 

Police Officers v. City (2018) - Currently prosecuting judicial appeals of multiple officers terminated in connection with an internationally renowned incident of excessive force resulting in the death of a citizen.

Police Officer v. City (2017) - Personnel commission upheld the termination of a police officer for false statements in court.

Police Officer v. City (2017) - Demotion of a peace officer for insubordination upheld after an administrative appeal.

Police Officer v. City (2017) - Civil service commission upheld the termination of a police officer for failure to disclose opiate use during the pre-employment medical examination.

Firefighter v. City (2016) - Administrative Law Judge upheld discipline of firefighter for misappropriation of private property left at a firehouse.

Police Officer v. City (2014) - A hearing officer upheld the termination of a police officer who misappropriated evidence - stolen power tools - and put it to use in his construction business. The officer claimed that an employee of a home improvement warehouse from which the property was originally stolen gave him permission to keep the tools.

Police Officer v. City (2014) - A former police officer abandoned his appeal after the Department's presentation of its case in the Department proved the former officer had taken a title loan on his vehicle and then sold the same vehicle to an unsuspecting buyer from whom the vehicle was repossessed.


San Francisco Police Officers’ Assoc. v. San Francisco Police Comm. (2018)-  Filed an amicus brief for the League of Cities and the California State Association of Counties.  The police association argued that the employer was obligated to arbitrate denial of a grievance alleging that the employer breached a contractual obligation to negotiate changes to its use of force policy.  But the MOU only required the employer to negotiate over matters within the scope of representation and the Court of Appeal held, among other things, that establishment of a use of force policy is a management right and involves a municipality’s exercise of police power that cannot be bargained away. 

County of Los Angeles v. Mendez (2017)- Submitted amicus brief at the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of the Los Angeles County Police Chiefs Association.  The case held that the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal’s provocation doctrine was inconsistent with the Supreme Court’s decision in Graham v. Connor, the seminal case establishing that an officer’s use of force must be judged according to an objective reasonableness standard.   The provocation doctrine had provided that officers could be liable for their otherwise reasonable force if they intentionally or recklessly committed an earlier Fourth Amendment violation that led to the use of force that injured plaintiff.

Hinderliter v. City of La Habra (2013) - After a personnel board upheld the termination of a police officer for dishonesty, a superior court judge determined that the dishonesty did not warrant termination of the officer's employment. The Court of Appeal reversed the trial court, holding substantial evidence supported the trial court's finding that the officer repeatedly lied to a superior officer and that the trial court erred in finding the City abused its discretion by terminating the officer.

Alice Robin v. City of Monrovia (2013) - Appellant Robin sued the City for allegedly retaliating against her, in violation of Title VII, after she filed complaints with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.  At trial, the jury was instructed to consider whether four separate actions by the City – including the offer of a retirement package known as the "Golden Handshake" – were retaliatory acts.  The jury returned a verdict in favor of the City and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed.  Robin appealed on the grounds that the trial court erred by not giving a jury instruction that the settlement agreement offered to her as part of the Golden Handshake did not comply with the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act (OWBPA). The Ninth Circuit rejected this argument, but it did conclude that the district court erred by declining to give an instruction setting forth the OWBPA's requirements.  Although the Court found error, it concluded that it was harmless based on the evidence at trial because it is more probable than not that the jury would have reached the same verdict even with the OWBPA instruction.

Ferguson v. City of Cathedral City (2011) - The Court of Appeal upheld termination of a police officer for solicitation of prostitution after the officer declared an earlier settlement agreement with the City "null and void" under which he had been suspended without pay.  The Court of Appeal also held that the City did not violate the officer's Skelly rights when the officer, who claimed to be unable to be able to drive the City for a Skelly meeting, was terminated without a Skelly meeting after he did not avail himself of various accommodations offered to him by the City to enable him to exercise his Skelly rights.

Thompson v. City of Monrovia  (2010) - In a case handled by Scott Tiedemann and Judith Islas, the Court of Appeal, second judicial district, affirmed summary judgment in this alleged retaliation and harassment case brought by a Caucasian police officer based on alleged discriminatory treatment towards his African-American co-worker.  Specifically, the officer claimed he was retaliated against for reporting alleged discriminatory treatment of his African-American co-worker and for testifying on the co-worker's behalf in a separate lawsuit brought by the co-worker.  The officer also alleged the City failed to investigate the alleged harassment and retaliation. In a lengthy opinion, the Court decisively rejected all of the officer's arguments.  Key in the court's analysis was the long and well documented history of the officer's performance issues.  On the harassment and hostile environment claims, the Court concluded that a Caucasian officer can premise these causes of action based on an association with or advocacy on behalf of another officer's protected classification but must show he was personally subjected to unwanted racial comments as a result of the association or advocacy and also, that the conduct was severe and pervasive, which the officer failed to so in this case.

Lopez v. Imperial County Sheriff's Office  (2008) - Two correctional officers appealed a Personnel Board ruling upholding their terminations based upon a tie vote by the Board. The correctional officers argued that their terminations should be overturned on a tie vote. The Appellate Court rejected that position affirming the trial court's ruling that the terminations were not to be overturned but the officers were to receive a new hearing.

Benach v. County of Los Angeles  (2007) - The California Court of Appeal held that removing a deputy sheriff from his special assignment as a pilot "without a concomitant loss of rank or pay" is not a punitive action which entitles the deputy sheriff to an administrative appeal under the Public Safety Officers Procedural Bill of Rights Act.


Miscellaneous Employees Association (2018) - Negotiated collective bargaining agreement that established 9/80 work schedule on a trial basis and afforded employer the ability to revert to 5/40 without further obligation to meet and confer.

Police Officers Association (2017) - Secured four-year collective bargaining agreement with police association that afforded city council flexibility to negotiate the fixed cost of living adjustments in last two years of an agreement without risk of fact-finding if increases were denied.

Police Officers Association (2017) - Negotiated memorandum of understanding that eliminated EPMC for classic members.

Miscellaneous Employees Association (2017) - Negotiated memorandum of understanding that eliminated EPMC for classic members.



  • BA, Loyola Marymount University

  • JD, Loyola Marymount University School of Law

Dec 3, 2020

Public Safety Annuitants

This article was published in the Winter 2020 edition of the California Police Chief Magazine.  

The present is a uniquely challenging time for law enforcement agencies.  Public discourse, which can tend to be demoralizing, is consistently critical of police.  In turn, legislators have set their sights on reform.  By the end of the 2020 legislative session, the California Legislature had passed a dozen new bills relating to law enforcement reform or increased public scrutiny over policing, most of which were signed into law by the Governor.  On top of all of that, the COVID-19 pandemic has threatened to cause staffing and funding shortages. All of this tumult threatens to lead to a talent drain.  Law enforcement faces increasing retirements and reduced recruiting.  One strategy law enforcement agencies commonly employ in tackling staffing issues is re-hiring retirees.  Caution is advisable.

Nov 16, 2020 Press Release

LCW to Present Nine Workshops at the 2020 Annual CALPELRA Virtual Conference

We are pleased to present and sponsor the 2020 Annual CALPELRA Conference taking place virtually this week (November 16 – 20)!  Don’t miss our nine scheduled conference presentations by our expert speakers.  Topics include negotiating in difficult times, telecommuting issues, public safety disability accommodations, and much, much more. 

Nov 11, 2020

Issues Public Employers Face During Mass Protest - Q&A

J. Scott Tiedemann and David Urban authored the California Special Districts magazine article titled "Issues Public Employers Face During Mass Protest - Q&A" for the September/October 2020 edition.  The article covers critical issues such as First Amendment rights, time off for civic engagement, potential criminal misconduct problems, social media questions, and other relevant laws surrounding employee involvement in protests.  

Nov 6, 2020

High Court to Rule Whether Bullets Always Qualify as a Seizure

Managing Partner J. Scott Tiedemann and Associate Brian Hoffman explored whether the Fourth Amendment applies to a police shooting if the suspect escapes in the “High Court to Rule Whether Bullets Always Qualify as a Seizure”, which was published in the Nov. 6, 2020 issue of the Daily Journal. The article highlights the Oct. 14 oral argument in Torres v. Madrid that was presented to the U.S. Supreme Court, which clarifies what constitutes a seizure under the Fourth Amendment. To read the article in its entirety, please visit the Daily Journal's website here

Sep 1, 2020 Press Release

Liebert Cassidy Whitmore Partners Named as National Law Journal’s Crisis Leadership Trailblazers

LOS ANGELESLiebert Cassidy Whitmore (“LCW”) is pleased to announce three Los Angeles partners have been named as National Law Journal’s Crisis Leadership Trailblazers. Firm Managing Partner J. Scott Tiedemann, Steven M. Berliner and Peter J. Brown were selected for their work in educating and guiding clients on labor and employment issues related to COVID-19.   

Jun 26, 2020

Public Employee Rights Might Block Some Police Discipline Efforts

Managing Partner J. Scott Tiedemann and Partner Geoffrey S. Sheldon were quoted in the Daily Journal article, "Public Employee Rights Might Block Some Police Discipline Efforts," discussing how labor laws guaranteeing due process rights to public employees might be preventing law enforcement agencies from acting on calls for discipline against officers. 


  • BA, Loyola Marymount University

  • JD, Loyola Marymount University School of Law

10 December 2020
Speaking Engagements

The Rules of Engagement: Supervisory Contacts with Subordinates

Golden West College Supervisors' Course Huntington Beach
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18 November 2020
Speaking Engagements

Managing Public Safety Employee Injuries And Illnesses: Navigating The Interactive Process, Labor Code 4850 And Similar Laws So That They Can Either Be Returned To Work Or Retired

California Public Employer Labor Relations Association (CALPELRA) 2020 Annual Training Conference Webinar
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23 September 2020
Speaking Engagements

Police Accountability: The Established Legal Landscape and Evolving Public Expectations

International Municipal Lawyers Association (IMLA) Virtual Annual Speaking Webinar
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26 August 2020
Speaking Engagements

The Legal Landscape of Police Officer Discipline in 2020

California Lawyers Association (CLA) Webinar Webinar
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  • BA, Loyola Marymount University

  • JD, Loyola Marymount University School of Law

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