David Y. Choi
David Y. Choi is a partner in the firm’s Los Angeles and Orange County offices. David is the co-chair of the Cannabis and Hemp Law practice and a leader in the Management and Professional Liability practice. A versatile counsel, he offers a wealth of experience in litigation, trial, transactions, and outside general counsel services. He has acted as outside general counsel and litigation counsel for clients including municipalities and public entities, nonprofits, various high-profile licensed professionals, and numerous businesses in real estate and construction, finance, professional services, retail, manufacturing, cannabis and hemp, education, technology, and other sectors.
In the realm of professional liability, David takes a pragmatic approach to resolving disputes to achieve optimal results. He has successfully defended directors and officers and professionals across an array of disciplines including real estate brokers, attorneys, insurance agents and brokers, architects and engineers, property managers, escrow officers, and accountants, amongst others.
- Defended an architect from a $15 million construction defect claim involving an adaptive reuse of an industrial building
- Defended an attorney involving a $54 million legal malpractice claim involving alleged lost income and diminution of corporate value of a lending business
- Defended an attorney from claims that the attorney caused the underlying client to lose custody of children after a marital dissolution proceeding
- Defended an outside general counsel of a debt settlement business from claims of malpractice for allegedly failing to adequately counsel the underlying client about applicable multi-state laws governing debt settlement practices
As a leader of the Cannabis and Hemp Law Group, David devotes a substantial portion of his practice to the emerging cannabis and hemp industries. He represents businesses operating along the distribution chain including cultivators, manufacturers, distributors, laboratories and retailers of cannabis and related products—including hemp and CBD products—as well as ancillary businesses such as suppliers of commercial hydroponics equipment. David focuses his practice on civil litigation, business transactions, regulatory compliance, and entity structuring. He advises clients on appropriately evaluating and managing risk and implementing mechanisms to protect market share.
David has a wide range of experience in commercial and general litigation, including business disputes, construction-related matters, premises liability, civil rights claims, municipal liability, and more.
- Defended a real property owner in a quiet title dispute involving a commercial property valued in excess of $30 million
- Prosecuted construction defect claims on behalf of a public entity owner against a national contractor and subcontractor involving property damage in excess of $18 million
- Defended a public entity client from a $1 million claim for a purported dangerous condition of public property
- Defended a public entity client from claims involving alleged civil rights violations and ultimately obtained a waiver of the claims in exchange for nominal consideration
David has served as outside general counsel for various public entities that own, manage, construct, and improve real estate throughout Southern California. With an understanding of the local, state, and federal laws and regulations pertaining to public entities, David has provided day-to-day counsel on issues ranging from employment and labor and directors and officers liability to land use, construction-related contracts and litigation avoidance, due diligence and transactions, emerging risks, and landlord-tenant issues. He also frequently represents these clients commercial and general civil litigation—including defending multimillion-dollar premises liability and civil rights-related claims.
In addition to resolving conflicts, David has significant experience in conflict prevention and general corporate services. His clients regularly rely upon him to craft effective agreements with an eye toward minimizing and mitigating the risk of future disputes. David has drafted and negotiated asset and equity acquisition agreements, real property acquisition and lease agreements, business contracts, governing documents, licensing agreements, and promissory notes.
Honors & Awards
Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rating: AV Preeminent
National Law Journal, Cannabis Law Trailblazer, 2019
Data Bird Cannabis Law Expert, 2018
- U.S. District Court for the Central, Eastern, and Northern Districts of California
- Loyola Law School, LL.M. (Taxation) with distinction, 2009
- Loyola Law School, J.D., 2008
- International and Comparative Law Review: Editor
- University of California, Los Angeles, B.A., 2003
- State Bar of California
Claims and Litigation Management Alliance (CLM)
- Cannabis Committee
Publications & Events
- Quoted, “‘Attention needed for renting marijuana businesses'” Korean Real Estate Association Seminar, Korea Daily, April 4, 2019
- “The Buck Stops Here: Liability and Non-Lawyers” (Co-Presenter), Professional Liability Seminar, New York, NY, December 6, 2019
- “Sex, Drugs, and Real Estate” (Co-Presenter), Korean American Real Estate Brokers Association, Los Angeles, CA, April 3, 2019
- “Construction Law 101: Tools to Manage Risk in Employment, Contracts, Insurance, Bonds, and More” (Co-Presenter), Chinese American Construction Professionals, Alhambra, CA, February 20, 2019
- Contributor, “USDA Issues Interim Final Rules for Domestic Hemp Production,” Timely Notice, January 21, 2020
- Contributor, “E-Cigarette and Cannabis Industries: Protect the Public and Yourself From Vape-Related Illnesses,” Timely Notice, November 5, 2019
October 30, 2019
April 1, 2019
October 25, 2018
January 10, 2013