Government Code Section 6000 – Newspaper of General Circulation Law California

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California Government Code sections 6000 is one of the two statutes, the second one being Government Code Section 6008,  that allow a publication to become adjudicated through a newspaper of general circulation attorney in California. This entitles the newspaper to publish legal advertising in its particular jurisdiction of adjudication. This article outlines the general parameters of the statute.

California Government Code Section 6000

Government Code Section 6000 provides:

A “newspaper of general circulation” is a newspaper published for the dissemination of local or telegraphic news and intelligence of a general character, which has a bona fide subscription list of paying subscribers, and has been established, printed and published at regular intervals in the State, county, or city where publication, notice by publication, or official advertising is to be given or made for at least one year preceding the date of the publication, notice or advertisement.

To expand, the requirements of Government Code Section 6000 are:

  1. “Published for the dissemination of local or telegraphic news and intelligence of a general character”
    • Government Code section 6001 explains that a newspaper of general circulation (NGC) cannot be “devoted to the interests, or published for the entertainment or instruction of a particular class, profession, trade, calling, race, or denomination, or for any number thereof, when the avowed purpose is to entertain or instruct such classes . . . .”
  2. “Bona fide subscription list of paying subscribers”
    • A list is “bona fide” if it is a “real, actual, genuine subscription list.” In re Herman (1920) 183 Cal. 153, 164. There is no statute specifying the number of paying subscribers that must be on this list.
  3. “Established” in the county, city or other political jurisdiction where where adjudication is sought for at least one year preceding the petition.
    • Government Code section 6002 explains that a newspaper is “established” if it has “been in existence under a specified name during the whole of the one-year period . . . .”
  4. “Printed” at least weekly in the county, city or other political jurisdiction where adjudication is sought for at least one year preceding the petition.
    • Government Code section 6003 explains that a newspaper is “printed” as required by law if “the mechanical work of producing it, that is the work of typesetting and impressing type on paper” is completed in the city or county where adjudication is sought.
  5. “Published” at least weekly in county or city where adjudication is sought for at least one year preceding the petition for adjudication.

The outline, above, provides only the broad requirements for adjudication under Government Code Section 6000. If you have specific questions about the statutory scheme governing newspapers of general circulation in California, contact a California media lawyer with experience counseling publications large and small with concerns related to newspaper legal advertising.

Contact a Newspaper of General Circulation Attorney Today

This highly specialized area of law requires legal interpretation not found in case law or statutes. For this reason, it is highly advisable to contact a media and First Amendment attorney who has represented petitioners and contestants of national, regional and local prominence. Talkov Law’s newspaper of general circulation attorneys have litigated cases in Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego, Ventura, Riverside and San Bernardino counties. For a free, 15 minute consultation with the media and First Amendment attorneys at Talkov Law, contact us online or by phone at (844) 4-TALKOV (825568).

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Scott Talkov is a partition lawyer and civil litigation attorney in California. He founded Talkov Law Corp. after more than one decade of experience with one of the region's oldest law firms, where he served as one of the firm's partners. He has been featured on ABC 7, CNN, KCBS, and KCAL-9, and in the Los Angeles Times, the Orange County Register, the San Diego Union-Tribune, the Press-Enterpise, and in Los Angeles Lawyer Magazine. Scott has been named a Super Lawyers Rising Star for 9 consecutive years. He can be reached about new matters at info@talkovlaw.com or (844) 4-TALKOV (825568). He can also be contacted directly at scott@talkovlaw.com.

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