About the Ohio Attorney General’s Office

About the AGO

What does the Attorney General’s Office do for Ohioans?

AGO LOCATIONSLed by the state’s chief law officer, the Attorney General’s Office (AGO) has played a vital role in shaping Ohio’s past and present. Since his inauguration in January 2019, current Attorney General Dave Yost and his staff have been working to help chart a strong future for Ohioans by fighting injustice, righting wrongs, and otherwise protecting the state and its families.

With roughly 1,500 employees based at two primary locations in central Ohio and eight other sites throughout the state, the AGO serves and protects Ohioans in myriad ways. Each year, the office staff interacts with tens of thousands of fellow Ohio residents.

What each section handles

The Attorney General’s Office consists of more than 30 sections and special divisions, each with distinct duties. The team works hard to fight crime and help victims heal, to support law enforcement and consumers, to safeguard those in need, and much more. The public-facing sections and divisions are:

ANTITRUST promotes competition in the marketplace by enforcing state and federal antitrust laws. The section also offers training to government personnel on detecting bid rigging and safeguarding the procurement process against vendor collusion.

APPEALS, headed by the Ohio Solicitor General, represents the state and its agencies on appeals in the U.S. Supreme Court, the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and the Ohio Supreme Court. The section also determines the cases for which the state will seek review and the positions it will take in those cases.

BUREAU OF CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION (BCI), the state’s official crime lab and criminal records repository, serves the criminal justice community and offers expert investigative services to local, state and federal law enforcement agencies. BCI has five major divisions: Identification, Laboratory, OHLEG, Special Investigative Services and Technical Investigations.

CHARITABLE LAW regulates charities in the state to ensure that donations are not misappropriated and that proceeds are used for charitable purposes. The section encourages sound board governance, oversees a registry of charities and professional solicitors, and licenses bingo operations. It also represents Ohio’s Liquor Commission, Lottery Commission, Horseracing Commission and Casino Commission.

CIVIL RIGHTS represents the Ohio Civil Rights Commission, prosecuting cases on its behalf. The section also conducts free training for employers, HR professionals, landlords, condo associations and businesses throughout Ohio to promote compliance with fair employment and fair housing laws.

COLLECTIONS ENFORCEMENT collects outstanding debt for state government agencies, boards and commissions, and all public colleges and universities. The section also works with more than 539 local governments and courts to collect their outstanding debts.

CONSTITUENT SERVICES operates the Attorney General’s Help Center, which the public can contact to file a complaint against a business; report tips on illegal gaming, health care fraud and patient abuse; request educational materials; and more. Ohioans can reach the Help Center from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays by calling 800-282-0515.

CONSTITUTIONAL OFFICES acts as legal counsel for all elected officials in statewide offices. The section includes the Public Records Unit, which publishes the annual Sunshine Law Manual.

CONSUMER PROTECTION ensures a safe and strong marketplace for consumers and businesses through education, dispute resolution and enforcement of consumer laws. Eight units within the section are tasked with more specific duties, including investigating and prosecuting violations of the Consumer Sales Practices Act, educating Ohioans about their rights, and resolving consumer disputes.

COURT OF CLAIMS DEFENSE defends the state in cases filed in the Ohio Court of Claims and argues appeals of those cases in the 10th District Court of Appeals and the Ohio Supreme Court. The section’s Construction Litigation Unit prosecutes defective construction claims on behalf of the state.

CRIME VICTIM SERVICES provides funding and services to victims, training to professionals who assist them and crime prevention programs to Ohio communities. The section also puts on the annual Two Days in May Conference on Victim Assistance, is responsible for the administration of the federal Victims of Crime Act and State Victims Assistance Act grant programs, and houses the AG’s Human Trafficking Initiative.

CRIMINAL JUSTICE consists of three units:

  • The Capital Crimes Unit works to uphold death sentences, which can require years of litigation in federal courts. The unit also aids, by request, county prosecutors trying death penalty cases.
  • The Habeas Unit works to keep dangerous criminals in prison by opposing litigation brought by inmates who seek to overturn valid convictions.
  • The Corrections Unit represents Ohio’s Department of Rehabilitation and Correction and Department of Youth Services in lawsuits brought by inmates.

EDUCATION handles litigation for the Ohio Department of Education and the State Board of Education; works to revoke or suspend the licenses of educators who fail to meet professional obligations; and provides legal counsel to universities, community colleges and technical colleges.

EMPLOYMENT LAW provides legal advice and representation on employment matters to state departments, agencies, commissions, elected officials, and public colleges and universities. These services save state resources by protecting against unsupported legal claims, reduce legal fees for outside counsel and help ensure that the state employs people worthy of public trust.

ENVIRONMENTAL ENFORCEMENT investigates and prosecutes those who violate environmental laws and represents state agencies that safeguard Ohio’s natural resources.

EXECUTIVE AGENCIES provides counsel to eight cabinet agencies and about 80 state boards and commissions. The section includes two distinct units: Labor Relations and Transportation.

HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES represents the Department of Aging; Department of Insurance and health-related professional licensing boards; the Department of Health; the Department of Medicaid and Department of Job and Family Services; the Unemployment Compensation Division of ODJFS; and the Department of Developmental Disabilities, Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, and State Board of Psychology.

HEALTH CARE FRAUD consists of two units:

  • The Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) investigates and prosecutes health care providers who defraud the state Medicaid program and also enforces Ohio’s Patient Abuse and Neglect Law, which protects the mentally and physically disabled and the elderly from neglect and abuse in long-term-care facilities. The unit is consistently one of the national leaders in indictments and convictions among all 53 Medicaid Fraud Control Units in the United States.
  • The Workers’ Compensation Fraud Unit prosecutes claimants, employers and health care providers who defraud the Ohio Workers’ Compensation Program.

OHIO ORGANIZED CRIME INVESTIGATIONS COMMISSION (OOCIC) assists local law enforcement agencies in combating pervasive organized crime — drug dealing and human trafficking, for example — through the creation of task forces made up of law enforcement officers and justice officials. The task forces receive wider jurisdiction and subpoena powers as well as operational help, funding and commission oversight.

OHIO PEACE OFFICER TRAINING ACADEMY (OPOTA), along with the Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission, oversees training and certification requirements for the 33,000+ law officers in the state and private security, corrections and humane agents. Staff members also annually put on the Fallen Officers Memorial Ceremony and the Law Enforcement Conference.

POLICY AND LEGISLATION works with state legislators and their staff members to turn ideas into initiatives and laws that better protect Ohioans.

PUBLIC UTILITIES represents the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio and the Power Siting Board, which reviews plans for new energy facilities.

SPECIAL PROSECUTIONS, upon the request of a local authority, provides AGO attorneys to serve as lead prosecutors in cases in which a conflict of interest exists. Also, local prosecutors can call upon those in the section to serve as assistant prosecutors in cases that require specialized knowledge or greater resources.

TAXATION represents the tax commissioner of Ohio, who is charged with administering and enforcing the state income tax, sales and use taxes, and several business and excise taxes.

WORKERS’ COMPENSATION provides legal counsel and advice to the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation and the Industrial Commission of Ohio. Typically, the cases focus on whether a claimant is entitled to participate in the workers’ compensation fund and what type of benefits a claimant may be entitled to receive.