David E. Hackett



David Hackett has a broad-based appellate practice in which he has prosecuted and defended numerous appeals and writ petitions, and briefed dispositive pre-trial and post-trial motions, on a variety of topics. They include: agency and partnership, arbitration, civil procedure, contracts, constitutional law, employment, environmental law, evidence, family law, health care, probate, real estate, state and federal regulations, and tax, among many others. David has also developed particular expertise representing secured commercial creditors in appeals regarding California’s unique real estate foreclosure procedures, the law of suretyship and guaranty, the “one action” rule, and the anti-deficiency law.

David received his law degree from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, where he was the valedictorian of his graduating class. He then served as a law clerk to Judge Gary A. Feess of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, and to Judge Alfred T. Goodwin of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Between clerkships, he was an associate in the Los Angeles office of Latham & Watkins, where his practice included complex civil litigation, international arbitration, internal corporate investigations, and white-collar defense matters.

David received his undergraduate degree from UCLA, and he is still a dedicated Bruins fan. One of his prized possessions is an autographed copy of Coach John Wooden’s Pyramid of Success.

Some of David’s recent appellate victories include:

  • Morgan v. J-M Manufacturing Company, Inc. (2021) 60 Cal.App.5th 1078 – Court of Appeal reversed $15 million punitive damages award in asbestos exposure suit.
  • Southern California School of Theology v. Claremont Graduate University, et al. (2021) 60 Cal.App.5th 1 – Court of Appeal reversed judgment against the Claremont Colleges, holding that the doctrine of equitable servitudes required full enforcement of their property purchase rights.
  • Millennium-Diamond Road Partners, LLC, et al. v. Diamond Bar Country Estates Association (Sept. 24, 2019, No. B285539, unpublished) – Court of Appeal affirmed damages and attorney’s fee awards and rejected appellant’s million-dollar counterclaim.
  • Coastline RE Holdings Corp. v. Cunningham (June 7, 2019, No. C076994, unpublished) – Court of Appeal affirmed $3.9 million judgment and held that “sham guaranty” defense failed as a matter of law.
  • Kanno v. Marwit Capital Partners II, L.P., et al. (2017) 18 Cal.App.5th 987 – Court of Appeal affirmed judgment, comprehensively analyzed the governing principles and application of the parol evidence rule in California and Delaware, and complimented “all counsel on the excellent briefing and oral argument in this case.”

High Impact Wins


Southern California School of Theology v. Claremont Graduate University (2021) 60 Cal.App.5th 1

Court of Appeal reverses judgment against GMSR’s clients and orders full enforcement of their property purchase rights

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Kanno v. Marwit Capital Partners II, L.P. (2017) 18 Cal.App.5th 987

Court comprehensively analyzes the governing principles and application of the parol evidence rule under both California and Delaware law

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Novak v. Fay (2015) 236 Cal.App.4th 329

Court establishes procedure for enforcing attorney liens against decedents’ estates

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Speaking and Involvement

CYA (Coach Your Attorneys): How to Help Your Outside Counsel Preserve the Record for an Appeal, American Property Casualty Insurance Association
Is Dynamex Dynamite? Evaluating Dynamex’s Potentially Explosive Effects On Tort Defendants, Employers, And The Gig Economy; Association of Southern California Defense Counsel Seminar
Writing and Arguing Winning Motions, June 12, 2019, Rossdale CLE (with Reuben Guttman and Matthew S. Carter)
MCLE: Fighting Non-Economic Tort Damages, Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office
The Write Stuff: How To Win Your Case With A Compelling Style And The Tools Of Rhetoric, December 12, 2018, ProLawCLE
Stop Controlling Me! Recent Legal Developments In Employee/Independent Contractor Classification In The Gig Economy, 29th Annual PCI Western Region General Counsel Seminar
Experts: Can’t Live With Them, Can’t Live Without Them, 28th Annual ACIC General Counsel Seminar
Reptiles, Picassos, And Stealth Bombers: Tips For Combating Aggressive Efforts To Inflate Non-Economic Tort Damages, 27th Annual ACIC General Counsel Seminar
Secret Agents: The Coverage You Didn’t Think You’d Be Providing, ACIC’s 26th Annual General Counsel Seminar

Professional Associations

Friends of the Los Angeles County Law Library, Board Member
Family Violence Appellate Project, New Leadership Council
Beverly Hills Bar Foundation, Board Member (2017 - 2018)
Law Student Mentor, The Appellate Project
Los Angeles County Bar Association, Appellate Courts Section
Federal Bar Association, Los Angeles Chapter
Association of Business Trial Lawyers (ABTL)
Association of Southern California Defense Counsel (ASCDC)