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Advocacy at a Higher Level

Horvitz & Levy is a solutions-based firm focused on appellate success. We are distinguished by our commitment to responsive service and on-going innovation in the areas of civil appellate litigation, amicus curiae support, and trial strategy consultation.

Our firm history, honors and awards, and locations speak to our collaborative approach and commitment to serving clients as well as the outstanding legal resources we bring to bear.

David M. Axelrad

David M. Axelrad

Partner - Los Angeles Office

How David Helps Clients

David Axelrad advises clients, including numerous Fortune 500 companies, with the benefit of over 40 years specializing in civil appeals. He regularly counsels clients on toxic tort and personal injury cases, and guides clients through the process of preserving the record in the trial court, attacking judgments in the trial court through post trial motions, staying enforcement of judgments, and perfecting an appeal. David is also a leader in providing value added briefings and educational seminars to clients on a wide variety of topics, and writes extensively on topics related to the civil appellate process.

David is a partner at the firm, where he has practiced since 1982. He is a California State Bar Certified Appellate Specialist, and has handled hundreds of civil appeals in state and federal courts, including cases in the California Supreme Court. Prior to joining Horvitz & Levy, David was an Assistant to the Director of the Bureau of Consumer Protection, Federal Trade Commission in Washington, D.C. David also served as a Staff Attorney for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Mr. Axelrad has been an Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of La Verne College of Law and Loyola Law School in Los Angeles.

Representative Matters

People v. Conagra Grocery Products et al. (2017)
California Court of Appeal reversed a judgment concerning the application of public nuisance law to the promotion of consumer products.

Hartford Casualty Ins. Co. v. J.R. Marketing, LLC (2015)
California Supreme Court held that insurers who pay excessive attorney fees to Cumis counsel are entitled to seek reimbursement directly from Cumis counsel itself, rather than from the insured.

Lockheed Litigation (2015)
Multiple state court appeals and trial court consultation concerning admissibility of expert testimony in toxic tort litigation and sufficiency of evidence to support punitive damages; savings to clients of $760 million.

Jankey v. Lee (2012)
California Supreme Court affirmed lower court decision concerning the availability of attorney fee awards in state disability rights litigation.

Kibler v. Northern Inyo County Local Hospital District (2006)
California Supreme Court affirmed lower court decision extending the protection of California’s anti-SLAPP statute to hospital peer review proceedings.

Advanced Bionics Corp. v. Medtronic, Inc. (2002)
California Supreme Court reversed lower court decision concerning judicial restraint and comity in the context of interstate anti-suit injunctions.

J.C. Penney Casualty Ins. Co. v. M.K. (1991)
California Supreme Court clarified the law governing “willful acts” excluded from insurance coverage.


  • Hastings College of Law, University of California
    J.D., 1977
  • Stanford University
    B.A., with distinction, 1972


  • Staff Attorney, U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit (1977-1978)

Bar Admissions

  • California
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Central District of California

Professional Associations


  • Top rankings from Chambers & Partners USA both in California and nationally
  • Best Lawyers (2006-2023)
  • Super Lawyers (2004-2024)
  • Top Ten Southern California Super Lawyers in 2015
  • California Lawyer Attorney of the Year (CLAY) Award (2011) for his work in the field of Legal Ethics
  • “AV Preeminent” rated by Martindale Hubbell