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About me

I have been in the real estate and legal field for over 35 years.  I obtained my real estate license in 1976 and became a real estate broker in California in 1980.  I fell in love with the law in the early 1980's and and became licensed with the California State Bar in 1983 passing the bar exam on the first attempt.  I spent the majority of my time consulting with individuals and businesses in these areas.  I have also been an Expert Witness in various courts in California.

I have been President and CEO of two businesses:  Farmers Market @Atrium Court in Newport Beach and Excel Steel in Adelanto CA.

I am not your conventional attorney.  I look for clients who want to resolve their problems.  I look for solutions and strive to help my clients, not add to their problems.  I am well known among the attorneys I come in contact with in my areas of expertise.  In 27 years, I do not believe that I would be viewed by other attorneys as anything but professional.  I treat them with respect and get respect in return.  The legal profession is not a game, it is a profession.  Am I successful?  You had better believe it.   However, it is because I am a professional at what I do.  Most of my clients have been with me for many years.  This website is great for producing new business.  However, I am looking for people who need help or a long term relationship. I hope that I can help you with your problem.





Practice areas


  1. General Practice: 50%
    32 years
  2. Business: 25%
    32 years
  3. Real Estate: 25%
    32 years



Hourly ($250-350/hour), contingent (25-35%), Fixed (sometimes), Free consultation (30 minutes)

Attorney endorsements

2 total 

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

  • Christian K. Lassen II

    I endorse this lawyer.


    Christian Lassen Wrongful death Attorney
    Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community

  • Peter Holzer

    I endorse this lawyer's work. In addition to being an excellent lawyer, Mr. McDonnell is a real estate broker, and he adds a "real-world" perspective to his practice that makes his advice invaluable. In the 30 years that I have been a lawyer, I have yet to find anyone who can hold a candle to Dave's professionalism.


    Peter Holzer Real estate Attorney
    Relationship: Friend

Contact info

23600 El Toro Rd Ste D #161
Lake Forest, CA, 92630


We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
American Jurisprudence (3)Western State University of Law1983
Editor's AwardWestern State University Law Review1983
Law ReviewWestern State University of Law1983
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
PresidentFarmers Market @ Atrium Court1999 - 2002
Association namePosition nameDuration
California Association of RealtorsReferral Panel Attorney1988 - Present
Orange County Bar AssociationSection Chairman - Real Estate1985 - 1987
Legal cases
Case nameOutcome
Landlord retaliates against family with autistic childrenDismissal of lawsuit against clients
Business sued for discrimination by ex-employeeSettled for minor amount in exchange for dismissal saving client thousands in legal fees.
See all legal cases 
Publication nameTitleDate
Western State University Law ReviewHuman Debris: The Injured Worker in America1983
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
Western State University College of LawLawJD - Juris Doctor1983
California State University, Long BeachBusiness AdministrationOther - Bachelors1978
Speaking engagements
Conference nameTitleDate
Real Estate OrganizationsReal Estate Law1985