Millstein, David J
David J Millstein

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David J. Millstein
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Martindale Hubbell


David Millstein is the founder of Millstein & Associates. Mr. Millstein represents clients at both the trial and appellate level from throughout California. He has trial and appellate experience in many areas of law including, business and business entities, commercial, contract, real estate, medical malpractice and family law.

During his more than 30 years as a practicing attorney, David Millstein has established himself as a sought-after, go-to lawyer for clients with the most complicated and complex cases in a wide array of practice areas. Throughout, he has given his clients the “small-firm” experience of personalized attention that is tailored to best understanding and achieving his clients’ goals in a cost-effective manner. His experience and success in and out of the courtroom have earned him the well-placed confidence of individuals, businesses, and professional and industry associations that seek his advice and skills as a litigator in the most demanding cases.

As an attorney adept at handling a variety of legal issues, David’s trial and litigation practice includes disputes involving business and commerce, employment, custody and probate, and personal injury. His work for both plaintiffs and defendants has resulted in victories at all levels in local, state and federal courts. When more resources are needed for the largest cases, David has assembled and led teams of other experienced attorneys.

David’s talents have been recognized by satisfied clients and by his peers in the legal community. In academia, David has been invited to share his knowledge of trial advocacy with aspiring attorneys and taught extensively as an adjunct professor of law at Hastings College of the Law, on the faculty of the Advocacy Clinic at Stanford University Law School, at Berkeley Law as well as at the University of San Francisco Institute for Trial Advocacy.

David has been recognized in the legal industry with numerous professional appointments, including his service with the Judicial Committee of the Bar Association of San Francisco, where he helps to evaluate and vet judicial candidates. Also, The State Bar of California Board of Governors appointed David as a Probate Monitor of the Office of Trials. His capable negotiation skills were showcased when he served as the arbitrator of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California for several years. Finally, his legal aptitude has been utilized in San Francisco Superior Court where he has handled civil disputes as a Judge Pro Tem.

With a strong background in trial and litigation, David has the savvy to pursue mediation and arbitration whenever it may save time, money and hassle for his clients.

In addition to his longtime private practice, David served for one year as Chief Assistant District Attorney in San Francisco. Throughout his career, media sources have sought him out to provide insightful commentary on topical, timely and newsworthy cases. In addition, numerous law journals and other publications have published David’s legal writing and commentary. He earned his law degree at the University of California at Berkeley Boalt Hall School of Law.


  • University of California at Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law, Berkeley, California
    • Doctor of Jurisprudence - 00/1979
    • Honors: Regent's Scholar
  • University of California at Berkeley, Berkeley, California
    • A.B., Bachelor of Arts - 00/1975
    • Honors: cum laude
    • Honors: Phi Beta Kappa; Debate Team, 2nd Place, St, Mary's Debate, 2nd Place,
    • Honors: California State University-Hayward, Attorney Judged Debate
    • Major: History

Classes & Seminars

  • Adjunct Professor of Law, Trial Advocacy I (Business Litigation, Trial Advocacy II (Personal Injury), Hastings College of the Law, University of California, San Francisco, 1993 - 1997, 2001 - Present
  • Lecturer at Law, Evidence Advocacy, Boalt Hall School of Law, University of California, Berkeley, January, 1995 to Present
  • Keynote, Speaker, Commonwealth Club, Lafayette, California, December 6, 1993
  • Panelist, Psychologist's Testimony: Family, Criminal Worker's Compensation and Personal Injury Cases, California Psychological Association, April 2, 1993
  • Lecturer, Essential Aspects of Screening Cases, San Francisco Bar Association, February 16, 1993
  • Lecturer, Communication Techniques and Trial Advocacy, MCLE Program, San Francisco Bar Association, September 13, 1994
  • Seminar Leader, Legal Implications of Suicidality in AIDS Patients, In Service, San Francisco General Hospital, June 1984
  • Co-Lecturer, Techniques of Persuasion, Continuing Education for Attorneys, MCLE Program, Hastings College of the Law, January 5, 1995, January 6, 1996
  • Advocacy Clinic Faculty, Stanford University School of Law, January 1994 – Present
  • Faculty, National Institute for Trial Advocacy (NITA), June 1994, June 1995
  • Faculty, Intensive Advocacy Program, University of San Francisco School of Law, May 1993, June 1994
  • Trainer, Advocacy Training For Public Interest Lawyers, San Francisco Bar Association, May 1994
  • Legal Commentator, Channel 7, ABC-KGO TV, San Francisco, California December 1995 to Present
  • Legal Analyst, Anchor Desk Commentary for O.J. Simpson Verdict Reporting (highest ratings), Channel 7, ABC-KGO TV, San Francisco, California, 1995 to 1995
  • Legal Analyst, Taped and Live Interviews and Commentary Relative to People V. O.J. Simpson, Channel 2, Fox-KTVU, Oakland, California, June 20, 1994 to September 1995
  • Interview, O.J. Simpson Case, Channel 4, KRON TV
  • Interview, O.J. Simpson Case, Channel 7, ABC-KGO TV, June 23-24, 1994
  • Featured Guest, Interview re Changes in Securities Class Action Suits (Syndicated Radio), National Business Report, January 4, 1996
  • Featured Guest, Peter B. Collins Show, Debate with Attorney General Dan Lungren, 3 Strikes Initiative, KSFO Radio, February 9, 1994
  • Featured Guest, Immunity for President Clinton, Talk America (Syndicated Radio), May 21, 1994
  • Featured Guest, Brad Messer Show, KTFA, Austin, Texas, May 20, 1994
  • Featured Guest, Political Correctness, KSFO, December 20, 1993
  • Featured Guest, David Tyre Show, WWLL, New Orleans (Syndicated in 42 States),
  • Featured Guest, Glen Mitchell Show (Syndicated in 15 States), KRLD
  • Featured Guest, National Business Radio, KERN, September 21, 1994
  • Press Conference: Campaign Financing Investigation in San Francisco Board of Supervisors Race, KTVU (Fox), KRON, San Francisco, March 10, 1993
  • Panelist “Breaking the Glass Ceiling Conference”, California Women Lawyers, May 10, 2003
  • Lecture, American Academy of Emergency Medicine, Anti-kickback Cases, March 15, 2002
  • Panelist, Domestic Violence Investigations, Calif. Assoc. of Certified Fraud Examiners, Nov. 2001
  • Lecture, California Association of Certified Fraud Investigators, February Examiners, February 15, 2001
  • Keynote Speaker, Harvard Club, City Club, San Francisco, CA, June 14, 1996, “Recent Developments in the S.F. Dist. Attorney’s Office.”
  • Lecturer, CAL CPA Litigation Group, Forensic Services Section, “Working with Attorneys & Presentation of Accounting Opinions”, October 18, 2012

Past Positions

  • Law Offices of David J. Millstein, Owner, 00/1982 to 00/1995
  • San Francisco District Attorney's Office, Assistant District Attorney, 00/1982 to 00/1983
  • Bostwick & Tehin, San Francisco, Law Clerk/Attorney, 00/1980 to 00/1981
  • Shartsis, Friese & Ginsburg, Law Clerk, 00/1979 to 00/1980

Published Works

  • Telephone Depositions, The Practical Litigator, January, 1994
  • Assembly Bill 185 (Principal Drafter), 1991
  • Taking or Opposing Telephone Depositions, The Practical Litigator, American Bar Association-American Law Institute, Volume 5, Number 2, March, 1994
  • A Road Map to Interstate Deposition Practice, The Practical Litigator, American Bar Association-American Law Institute, Volume 4, Number 3, May, 1993
  • The S & L LItigation Explosion, California Lawyer, Volume 11, Number 12, December, 1991
  • How to Prepare For, Take and Use Depositions (Supplement Author), 1995 Supplement (James Publications), 1995
  • ALI-ABA's Practice Checklist Manual on Taking Depositions, (Contributor), Mark Carroll, Editor (ABI-ALI), 1995
  • Corporate Practice of Medicine, lifeline, American College of Emergency Physicians, California Chapter, October 2001
  • Coercive Contracting, lifeline, American College of Emergency Physicians, California Chapter, September 2000

Professional Associations

  • United States District Court, Northern District, Member, Arbitration Panel, 1988 - 2003, 1987
  • San Francisco Bar Association, Member, Jan 2007 - Present
  • American Bar Association, Member, Section of Litigation, Sub-Section of Insurance Coverage
  • San Francisco Bar Association, Member, Section of Litigation
  • Old Mill School Site Council, Mill Valley School District, President, 1994
  • Old Mill School Site Council, Mill Valley School District, Member, 1992 to 1994
  • Sycamore Park Neighborhood Association, Secretary, 1990 to 1991
  • Hastings College of Law, University of California, San Francisco, Co-Chair, Hastings College of Advocacy, Personal Injury Institute, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1998, 1994 to 1994
  • City and County Municipal Court of San Francisco, Judge Pro Tempore, 1984 -2008
  • State Bar of California, Office of Trials, Probation Monitor, Appointed by Board of Governors, July 1994 – Present
  • San Francisco District Attorney's Office, Transition Team Member, Sub-Committee of Personnel, 1996 to 1996
  • Academy of Medical Economics, Member, Advisory Board, 1993
  • Naval Academy Foreign Affairs Conference, Delegate, 1974 to 1974
  • California Trial Lawyers Association, Member, Judicial Committee, Business Committee Sub-section, 1993 to 1994
  • San Francisco Bar Association, Business Litigation Section
  • San Francisco Bar Association, Labor & Employment Law Section
  • San Francisco Bar Association, Family Law Section
  • American Bar Association, Health Law Section

Practice Areas

  • Business and Commerce
  • Employment
  • Custody and Probate
  • Personal Injury

Bar Admissions

  • California, 1979
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 9th Circuit, 1983
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of California, 1983
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of California, 1996
  • U.S. District Court Central District of California, 1983
  • U.S. District Court Western District of Arkansas, 2001
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of New York
  • U.S. Court of Appeals District of Columbia Circuit, 2008


  • A.V. Rating, Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory, 1994 - Present
  • Who's Who in American Law, 1993 - Present

Representative Cases

  • Heda v. Superior Court (Davis), 275 Cal.Rptr. 136, 1990, Cal.App. 1 Dist., 1990166459