Charles Yates

Attorney Sacramento

Charles Yates rejoined Pacific Legal Foundation in the fall of 2019 as a Constitutional Law Fellow after completing a clerkship in the spring. His interests span PLF’s practice areas, with a particular focus on property rights, environmental law, and the administrative state.

Charles obtained his B.A. in political science and international relations from the University of Western Australia. He then moved to the U.S., where he earned his J.D. magna cum laude from the University of Baltimore School of Law. During law school, he served as president of his school’s chapter of The Federalist Society and was an editor of the University of Baltimore Law Review. Other highlights from his law school days include an internship at the Cato Institute and a clerkship at the Institute for Justice.

Charles credits his strong belief in the principles of individual liberty to his family. His personal philosophy was consolidated further while studying the works of Adam Smith, James Madison, J. S. Mill, and other classical liberals as an undergraduate. Born and raised in Australia, Charles has always admired the U.S. Constitution as the purest and most enduring application of the ideals of the Enlightenment. He is thrilled to have been given an opportunity to devote his career to preserving constitutional protections and advancing liberty.

In his spare time, Charles enjoys spending time with his wife Maxine, reading, and playing the bass guitar.


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December 08, 2020

Daily Journal: High court should require agencies to be transparent about decision-making

In a letter written late in his life to Kentucky legislator William Barry, James Madison warned that a "popular Government without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy; or, perhaps both." In the context of the sprawling and often unaccountable modern administrative state these words ...

May 11, 2020

The Golden Conure is no longer endangered, but it took bureaucrats years to follow their own rules and acknowledge it

Following two successive PLF lawsuits, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service last month reclassified the golden conure from endangered to threatened. The decision—which, according to Congress' wishes, should have been finalized much earlier—recognizes the bird's improved status and removes unnecessary federal regulations. Native to the Amazon basi ...