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About me

Michael L. Claessens is the managing partner of License Advocates Law Group, a Pasadena law firm with deep expertise in the defense of misconduct allegations on behalf of California students and faculty and on behalf of State professional and occupational licensees. "We defend our education clients against expulsion, termination, and other kinds of discipline in educational institutions. We defend State license-holders and license applicants against license revocation, denial, and against restrictions of the license by State licensing agencies."


Before forming License Advocates Law Group LLP with friend and colleague Christine McCall, Mike served the City of Los Angeles as a prosecutor in the Los Angeles criminal courts, as a defense litigator in the Los Angeles state and federal civil courts, and as a senior lead counsel in internal investigations and complex and class action matters. 


As Senior Assistant City Attorney, Mike supervised and directed Los Angeles’ central civil litigation staff, managing resources and supervising staff of more than 124 attorneys and support personnel who were responsible for defending civil lawsuits. He also provided legal and management advice directly to the Los Angeles City Attorney, City Council, Mayor, executive officers, and numerous City Department boards, commissions and general managers.


Mike is the proud holder of a California General Building and Plumbing Contractor License in effect for more than 34 years. Mike put himself through law school working as a Building Mechanical Inspector for the Los Angeles City Department of Building and Safety, ultimately reaching the rank of Chief Inspector and he has taught Fire Science at California State University Los Angeles.



Photos and videos

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Practice areas


  1. Administrative Law: 100%
    30 years, 500 cases



Fixed (sometimes)

Payment types:

Check, Credit card

Attorney endorsements

2 total 

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

  • Steven Alan Fink

    I endorse this lawyer. Mike's answers demonstrate his superb knowledge of the niche specialty of licensing. Many occupations require a license in order to work. Mike will help you get that license and keep it, even in the event of government efforts to revoke or suspend the license. He is one of the few lawyers I would trust to handle a licensing issue.


    Steven Fink Real Estate Attorney
    Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community

  • Christine C McCall

    I endorse this lawyer's work. Mike Claessens is a truly outstanding lawyer. He is scrupulously ethical, thorough in everything, and an excellent critical thinker. His research is wholly reliable; his written motions and P's & A's are effective and compelling. He has superb analytic skills, knows how to cut to the heart of matters while still honoring the fine distinctions that are so frequently determinative. He can keep a dozen projects in full-on mode at the same time, with no corners cut. All that said, he is unsurpassed in negotiations skills. He has that rare gift of negotiating so that the issue is win-win, never gets in his own way in the back-and-forth, and his word is gold.


    Christine McCall Administrative Law Attorney
    Relationship: Co-worker

Contact info

225 S. Lake St. 3d Floor
Pasadena, CA, 91101-3000


We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
Outstanding LeadershipCity Attorney Carmen A. Trutanich2010
Council ResolutionLos Angeles City Council2010
Certificate of AppreciationCity Attorney Rocky Delgadillo2009
AdmissionNinth Circuit Court of Appeals2002
Promotion of Excellence in Fire Service EducationCalifornia State University Los Angeles1988
American Jurisprudence Award: Constitutional LawUniversity of La Verne1984
American Jurisprudence award: EvidenceUniversity of La Verne1984
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
Certified ArbitratorOffice of Administrative Hearings, Public Works Contract Arbitration Program2010 - Present
PartnerLicense Advocates Law Group2010 - Present
Managing Senior Assistant City AttorneyOffice of the Los Angeles City Attorney1988 - 2010
Association namePosition nameDuration
Crescenta Valley Water DistrictBoard Member2014 - Present
Crescenta Valley Town CouncilCouncil Member2011 - Present
Los Angeles County Bar AssociationMember2003 - Present
Legal cases
Case nameOutcome
Dillingham Ray Wilson, et al. v. City Of Los AngelesJudgment for Plaintiffs, case on appeal
Monroy, Yesenia BC 339263/Monroy, Jeannette 01K24186defense verdict, city lost appeal, re-trial
B.A.Aguilar, et al. v. City of Los Angeles, et al. CV07-04131 AHM (FMOx) [30 plaintiffs]Settled
See all legal cases 
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
University of La Verne College of LawLawJD - Juris Doctor1986
Speaking engagements
Conference nameTitleDate
Minimizing Risks and Subsequent Liabilities Within State, County and City Departments, NCDAPolice Litigation Risk Management2010
Fire Science, CSULACode Enforcement for Investigators1989
Fire Science, CSULAUniform Building Code1988
Fire Science, CSULAFire Protection Systems Design1988