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R. Michael Collum

Family Attorney at LOS ANGELES, CA

5.0   15 reviews

also known as Michael Collum

  • Licensed for 34 years
    State CA
    Acquired 1989
    Active No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About R. Michael

Learn R. Michael’s areas of practice.

Michael is a graduate of the University of Southern California Law School, and was formerly a partner of Knowles Collum LLP in Beverly Hills, and an associate of Loeb and Loeb, LLP in Los Angeles.  Michael has extensive family law and civil litigation experience, including matters involving complex tracing and reimbursement issues, joinder of third parties and trusts, and unwinding asset-protection schemes and fraudulent transfers of property.

Michael’s litigation approach is to attempt informal resolution if possible, but to be prepared to litigate aggressively if necessary.  Michael has substantial experience in all aspects of family law, including property division, support, custody, same sex dissolutions, domestic violence restraining orders, prenuptial agreements and family law appeals.  Michael’s civil litigation experience includes business disputes, defamation, injunctions, property disputes, contract claims and civil appeals.


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5.0 / 5.0
  15 customer reviews
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Posted by Michael | June 24, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Great and Good
Great and Good are hard to in the same person and rare in the world of family law. Michael is one of the good ones and a great lawyer; a calming professional in the contentious world of family court. From our first phone call to today, I am grateful for his knowledge of the law, his calming demeanor and his exceptional writing and legal comprehension. The journey matters for me and Michael helped me navigate and talk through all the potential scenarios, all the while communicating clear and actionable next steps. We did it together and having Michael on speed dial is a comfort that I wanted to share by writing this review.
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Posted by Marianna | June 22, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Michael Collum is an amazing, compassionate, knowledgeable, reliable, and seasoned attorney. He has been my attorney since 2017, and words alone cannot describe how grateful and thankful I am to have found him. He is a gem. He has successfully defended me in court, and had a fabricated TRO dissolved and dismissed. Michael’s professionalism and integrity are unparalleled. Even in the most challenging situations, I could count on Michael’s sound legal advice. The fact he is so calm and level headed is impressive given the emotional intensity of family law cases. I highly recommend Michael Collum and his law firm, and a five-star rating doesn’t begin to describe his skills and abilities as a family law attorney. He is simply brilliant.
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Posted by Elizabeth | June 22, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Excellent Attorney--highly recommend
Michael Collum receives my highest recommendation. He is an incredibly dedicated, compassionate, and ethical attorney in a challenging area of law that is frequently highly charged with emotion. He takes quick action to protect the interests of his clients, and he was always been available to support me and to explain to me the ramifications of my legal situation. He was at all times extremely responsive to my questions, which has not always been my experience with lawyers. I appreciate his zealous representation, and I will always contact Michael with any future legal needs.
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Posted by anonymous | June 22, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
My Hero
It is not an understatement to say that Michael and David saved my life. I was in a five-year divorce that was taking me down financially and emotionally, supporting myself and three children without support payments and spending every dime on legal fees to other law firms. Then, I found Michael Collum. Michael mercifully took me on as a client on the eve of trial when I was so broke that I was representing myself against one of the biggest divorce firms in the city. David took on a mountain of evidential binders. The team took on my ex's counsel, who was hell bent on draining me financially until I agreed to all of his onerous and made-up reimbursement claims. Michael and David litigated like absolute champions. My ex was embarrassed on the stand when Michael made him admit to all his lying by undermining all of his testimony with actual evidence. Collum's final argument trapped my ex's counsel into withdrawing his claims based on his inability to prove any of them. I walked away with my freedom and a redeemed faith that there are still some heroes on this planet. Thank you Michael and David.
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Posted by Layla | May 13, 2019
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Michael Collum is bright, bold, genteel and a little scary...
In another life, Michael was likely a butcher. He effortlessly trims the fat. I've been in a complex, high profile family law case for too long. In one conversation with Michael, I learned what was wrong with my case and the clear steps necessary to remedy the situation. Family law is essentially a forms based practice that a trained monkey could succeed in. Keeping that in mind, the key to succeeding in your family law case lies 100% with your attorney. Michael Collum is a strategic, results-driven attorney who will slay opposing counsel. Beware: the butcher has arrived.
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Posted by Chantel | April 5, 2019
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
I first began working with Michael about two years ago. Since then he has been by my side through a long term marriage divorce and child custody proceedings. I have never felt in better hands than when I’m working with him. He has always been honest and open about what needs to be done and does not lead you into spending extra time and money on things that are unnecessary. His knowledge and command of the law are bar none. In court his deliverance is that of a confident man that is not flustered by the opposing side. He is a gentleman, respectful. He showed me patience and guided me through each process. I have a difficult time with confrontation and Michael was just what I needed to garner my strength and courage. We have had good news each step of the way and if we ever have less than that I will know that he put in all of his effort. I have recommended him to others who have used him with success and I will continue to do so. I am grateful that I was led to Michael, I would not be in the position that I’m in now without him and his expertise.
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Posted by Christian | November 29, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Excellent Family Law Specialist
Mr. Collum represented us in a contentious divorce and custody case. He always looked out for the safety of our daughter protecting her with every legal means available. He was able to obtain sole legal and physical custody after physical abuse by the opposing spouse. He argued to the Court that the opposing spouse was an unfit parent. The Court agreed and ordered only limited Skype visitation. After uncovering fraud and concealment of income and real property, Mr. Collum successfully argued to the Court to retroactively recalculate and augment spousal and child support. Mr. Collum is an exceptional attorney. We recommend him without reservation.
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Posted by Raymond M | August 27, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Michael Won a Jurisdictional Fight and Protected My Spousal Support Rights
I highly recommend Michael Collum to handle your dissolution case. He is extremely professional, ethical, personable, smart, and delivers what he says he will deliver. When’s the last time a family lawyer did that in Los Angeles? From Northern California, I hired Michael to represent me in an abatement case in Los Angeles in which my ex’s lawyer unethically filed a default spousal support and would have required me to litigate in Southern California. Michael successfully had the judge set aside the default, vacate the default judgement and rule that Northern California has jurisdiction over our divorce case. Thanks to Michael, I can pursue spousal support and all future court appearances will be in Northern California, not Los Angeles. Thank you very much Michael!!
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Posted by James | March 15, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
He helped me protect my son
I’m a combat veteran that lost custody of my son after returning from Iraq in 2003. I retained counsel and lost over and over again. Fighting for custody of my son was more difficult and heart wrenching than fighting in Iraq (former Marine Scout Sniper). We learned to live with the custody arrangement and maximized every opportunity to spend with my son. When matters went from bad to worse I met with Mr. Collum and provided detailed notes of items past, present and what was easily predicted. Mr. Collum worked with us on a payment structure that I could afford and he went to work. Thorough, knowledgeable, compassionate and trustworthy are words I use to describe him. After 8 years of fighting an uphill battle with horrible results, Mr. Collum won for us in court. That was 7 years ago. My son is now 19, healthy, handsome and safe. Because of Mr. Collum I was able to be present (full custody) during a period in my son’s life when he needed a father most. An old friend of mine who is a retired attorney used to joke around that no one ever called him with good news. They always called him when they needed his help. Thinking about those conversations with my old neighbor, I reached out to Mr. Collum to tell him thanks, again. I’m a proud father and a grateful man. Thanks again Mr. Collum.
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Posted by judy | July 29, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Review of my attorney
Attorney Michael Collum represented me in the best possible way. He completely defended my rights and respected my dignity during a very long and complicated divorce process. I highly recommend Mr. Collum to anyone going through a difficult divorce.
Posted by Tim | December 20, 2015
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
There is no better Family Law Specialist in California
If I were asked to “build” the perfect dissolution attorney, my creation would be Michael Collum. Michael brings calm and assurance to an emotionally overwhelming process. He is bright, personable, hardworking, accessible, kind, patient, trusted by Judges and is a certified Family Law Specialist. That means he’s an expert at what he does. He has represented celebrities and the mega rich, yet treated me as if I were both. I am neither. I found Michael in June, 2015, after 20 months of litigation terrorism by my ex-wife and her impossibly unethical attorney. Within 4 months, he settled my case. And I live in Virginia! My first attorney was a warrior, but inexperienced. We were both duped by the unprecedented level of dishonesty and underhandedness leveled at us by opposing counsel. Any correspondence or document we served on him, he claimed he never received. He claimed to have mailed or faxed or emailed documents and letters that he never actually sent. He refused to be reasonable- called “meet and confer” forcing needless and expensive Motions and Court hearings. Then, would not obey subsequent Court Rulings Ordering his client to comply with the law. He dumped 21,000 pages (7 boxes) of disorganized and irrelevant documents on me which had to be copied and reviewed which cost me thousands of dollars. He proffered false evidentiary support and Declared under Oath that lies were the truth. He lied to the Court to the point that she said in open Court “neither you nor your client have any credibility in this Court.” Needless to say, my original $25,000 Retainer was quickly exhausted and, despite sanctions and Orders to comply, I never received a single useable, verified response or document after 20 months of litigation! I was out of money and my lawyer was going to court to withdraw from representing me saying that, even if we won at trial, there may not be any assets left in the estate to split up. At the same time, opposing counsel had filed 4 separate sham Motions demanding that I answer questions and give him documents when I had already given them to him and he was asking for $5,000 in sanctions. I was overwhelmed, broke and devastated. That was in May, 2015. Enter Michael Collum. June, 2015. We spoke over the phone at length and he listened, suggested courses of action and immediately sent me a Retainer Agreement I could work with. He appeared on my behalf just days later opposing the 4 conyrived Motions. Result: Motions Denied. Sanctions Denied. Opposing counsel quickly tried to exploit Michael being new to a file that consisted of thousands of pages by sending Michael a letter ostensibly written by my former lawyer. Michael immediately phoned me and questioned the contents of the document. I told him it was false. He then checked with my first attorney and verified that the letter was a fake. Opposing counsel had used my former lawyer’s letterhead and fabricated a letter and then forged her name to it. Michael informed the California bar association. Simultaneously, Michael and I had agreed to move to appoint a Receiver who would expose millions in assets hidden and undisclosed by my ex. Michael’s invaluable associate, David Handel, had also filed what is called a “doomsday” Motion that would ask the Court to essentially punish my ex and her attorney for all of their fraud and obstreperous conduct by awarding the entire estate to me. All of these actions were certain to succeed. It was now August, 2015. Within weeks, my case was settled. I do not believe there is a better Family Law Specialist in California.
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Posted by Steve | December 2, 2013
Robert Michael Collum is a 5-star lawyer!
Michael represented me when I broke up with my partner after 18 years. My partner tried to cut me out of any rights to a home that we bought together, but put the title in his name only per the suggestion of his mortgage broker. Foolishly, I never demanded he sign a quit-claim deed to put me on title. Further complicating this case was the fact that we were a same-sex couple that was not married, nor domestic partners. Unfortunately, my ex found a lawyer that saw a distraught man whom he could take advantage of. He told my ex that I had no rights to the home and that I had no case to bring to court. When I received a letter from the lawyer informing me that my name was not on title and that I was to leave within fourteen days or else face formal eviction proceedings, I hired Michael and we filed a complaint against my ex. Nine months into the case, my ex realized that his lawyer was more interested in billing him hours than helping him win or settle. It took him hiring a second lawyer who was more honest and ethical to bring this case to a resolution. Thus, I was able to see how Michael worked against two different attorneys. Michael's knowledge of the law was apparent from the beginning. The case he built for me was methodical, and the way he responded to the other lawyer's arguments was nothing less than "commanding". It was obvious that Michael was running the show with both lawyers. He was intelligent, professional, and confident in his writings and in court. I was also quite impressed with Michael's ability to remember the smallest of facts weeks after they were introduced into the case. It made me feel like he was really listening to everything I told him. Even when he had to tell me bad news, I felt that Michael was always being honest and that I was getting the entire story. Michael was also honest about the costs involved in pursuing my case. He would discuss different strategies and be frank about what each option would cost to pursue. No one likes to spend money on legal fees, but I never felt like I was being cheated or taken advantage of. I believe he wanted to do the right thing for me, not just make a dime off of me. In the end, we prevailed and I couldn't have asked for a better outcome. It was an incredibly stressful eleven months. At times it seemed like it would never end. Michael did more than represent me, he helped me stay strong in standing my ground. I would't hesitate to recommend Michael to anyone needing legal help.
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Posted by anonymous | November 24, 2013
Highly recommended family law attorney
Mr. Collum represented me in a highly contentious divorce. Unlike other attorneys, his focus was on ending the matter, while always having best interest in mind. He was not interested in stretching out ending the matter. However,, he was prepared to see it through the end, with a very strategic game plan. I appreciated how calm he was at all times, and never allowed the intensity of the opposing side get him emotionally charged. I have and would recommend Mr. Collum to anyone who is seeking representation in a divorce.
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Posted by Tom Kreiss | April 19, 2010
Excellent Lawyer!
Michael did a superior job. He got the absolute best results possible. He is very thorough and knowledgeable I would give him the highest recommendation to anyone in need of a lawyer that gets results. After having to deal with numerous lawyers in my past I can't emphasize enough how much I appreciate his professionalism and efficiency in getting me the best results possible.
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Posted by anonymous | January 29, 2010
Outstanding Family Law Attorney
Michael handled my divorce in an efficient, timely and compassionate manner. He was responsive to my needs and helped me through the entire process. I am so grateful for Michael's caring manner and incredible results! I would recommend him to anyone who is about to go through a divorce.
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AVVO RATING 9.3 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Principal Attorney
  • R. Michael Collum, A Law Corporation
  • 2012 - 2014
  • Partner
  • Knowles Collum LLP
  • 2009 - 2012
  • Principal Attorney
  • Law Offices of R. Michael Collum
  • 2005 - 2009
  • Associate Attorney
  • Novian & Novian
  • 1997 - 2005
  • Associate Attorney
  • Law Offices or Ronald Jason Palmieri
  • 1994 - 1997
  • Associate Attorney
  • Langberg, Leslie, Mann & Gabriel
  • 1992 - 1994
  • Associate Attorney
  • Loeb & Loeb
  • 1990 - 1992
View all work experience


  • University of Southern California Law School
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 1989
  • Millsaps Coll
  • BA - Bachelor of Arts
  • 1985


  • Harriett Buhai Center for Family Law
  • Volunteer Attorney
  • 2016 - Present
  • Friendly Hand Foundation
  • Executive Committee
  • 2015 - Present
  • American Bar Association
  • Member
  • N/A
  • State Bar of California
  • Member
  • N/A
  • Friendly Hand Foundation
  • President
  • 2016 - 2017
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Certified Specialist - Family Law
  • State Bar of California
  • 2014
  • Certified Specialist - Family Law
  • State Bar of California
  • 2009

Attorney endorsements

Received (5)
Given (4)
Endorse R. Michael
Family Attorney | Jun 13
Relationship: Other
"Michael is an exceptional family lawyer, exceptionally knowledgeable, exceptionally competent. More importantly Michael is friendly and warm, someone who you would want to work with in stressful times."
Litigation Attorney | Feb 12
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"An exceptional litigation attorney whose reputation speaks for itself. Highly recommended lawyer."
Unknown Attorney | Nov 22
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Family Attorney | Jul 16
Relationship: Worked for lawyer
"I endorse this lawyer."
Family Attorney | Apr 10
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I endorse this lawyer. Michael is one of the very best family law attorneys I have EVER worked with. His writing and argument are compelling and persuasive, his approach both comprehensive and compassionate. He has the highest recommendation as both a Family Law Attorney (Certified) and Civil Litigator that this attorney can give."

Avvo Contributions

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LOS ANGELES Family Lawyer R. Michael Collum
R. Michael Collum
Family Attorney
Licensed for 34 years