JD, 1986 – U.C.L.A. School of Law, Los Angeles, California
BS, 1982 – U.S.C. Public Administration, Los Angeles, California
Mr. Calsada is licensed to practice law in all courts in the State of California and is admitted to practice before the United States District Courts for the Northern District, Central District and Southern District. Mr. Calsada is also admitted to practice before the Bankruptcy Appellate Panel for the Ninth Circuit and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Since 1999, Mr. Calsada has been certified by the California State Bar as a Certified Specialist in Bankruptcy Law and appeared as Pro Hac Vice counsel in the States of Nevada, Delaware and Texas.
Mr. Calsada has been practicing specifically in the areas of real estate, land use, municipal, election law and redevelopment law for over three decades and has represented numerous public officials and a wide variety of public agencies, including municipalities, school districts and water districts. Mr. Calsada has advised municipalities in the emerging area of Cannabis law resulting in the creation and implementation of special overlay zones for several cannabis operators.
As Deputy General Counsel for the former Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency, Mr. Calsada was responsible for drafting and reviewing exclusive negotiation agreements, owner participation agreements, development agreements, parking agreements, loan documents, grant deeds, trust deeds, covenants running with the land, ground leases and low-income housing tax credit deals. Mr. Calsada counseled the Agency on bankruptcy litigation matters and oversaw litigation handled by outside counsel. Mr. Calsada advised the Agency on its in-house loan policies and procedures, compliance with the Brown Act, Public Records Act, the Public Contract Code, the Tort Claims Act, and resolved numerous redevelopment, environmental, land use, inverse condemnation, eminent domain, and tort and contract law disputes.
As Deputy City Attorney for the City of Los Angeles, Mr. Calsada advised the City and its various departments, commissions, and boards on housing, rent control, building and safety, zoning and planning matters. Over his career, Mr. Calsada has acquired extensive litigation experience matters, at both the trial and appellate level, having litigated to settlement or judgment significant land use, real estate, contract law, election law, bankruptcy law and environmental law matters.
Currently, Mr. Calsada is Of Counsel to Kane, Baller & Berkman. Mr. Calsada serves as litigation counsel to several of the firm’s public agency clients.
Prior to joining Kane Ballmer & Berkman, Mr. Calsada has served as counsel to the Cities of Los Angeles, Lynwood, South Gate, Bell and Maywood. Mr. Calsada has also served as litigation counsel for the Lynwood Unified School District and the West Valley Water Board. Since 2017, Mr. Calsada has been special counsel to the City of Cudahy on cannabis matters.
Mr. Calsada is an award-winning mediator for the Central District of California
Bankruptcy Courts and the Los Angeles Superior Court. Mr. Calsada has received numerous awards for pro bono work for San Fernando Valley domestic violence housing shelters.
Significant Cases in the Federal and State Courts
STATE COURT MATTERS
Cudahy Citizens Challenging Council Corruption v. City of Cudahy
Mr. Calsada successfully defended the City of Cudahy on a Petition for a Writ of Mandate and Complaint alleging that four (4) members of the Cudahy City Council met in secret, and violated the state’s open meeting laws (the Brown Act) when they voted in May, 2018, to remove a fellow council member for failing to attend City Council meetings.
The Petitioner, an unincorporated association known as Cudahy Citizens Challenging Council
Corruption, filed an appeal to the trial court’s ruling.
On July 29, 2020, the Appellate Court (2nd Dist) held that the appeal was moot, and found no public interest exception applied in this case. The dismissal of the appeal left the trial court ruling undisturbed. The trial court found that Petitioners conceded that Cudahy’s City Council deliberations arose from protected 1st amendment activity, and failed to show a probability of prevailing on its claim that the City Council violated the Brown Act. The trial court further found that the actual intent of the Petitioners’ complaint was to personally benefit the Councilmember removed from office. Therefore, the lawsuit was not solely in the public interest.
Ward v. Munoz (CA2d) Unpublished Opinion 11/16/09
[REVERSED] Mr. Calsada reversed on appeal a Judgment which “deemed recorded” prior to the death of a severing joint tenant a quitclaim deed which was not officially recorded until 90 days after death in violation of Civ. Code Section 683.2(c)’s seven-day rule.]
Chu v Chu (Santa Clara Superior Court) MSJ Ruling 12/5/2011
[GRANTED. Judge McKenney granted Mr. Calsada’s Summary Judgment Motion on the complaint to quiet title and cancel deed and living trust instruments, purporting to sever a joint tenancy, which was recorded more than 7 years after their creation in violation of Civ. Code Section 683.2(c).]
FEDERAL COURT MATTERS
In re Cregar (BAP) Memorandum 11/19/10
[Bankruptcy Judge Catherine Bauer’s Order disallowing Debtor’s amended exemption claims based on bad faith without holding an evidentiary hearing was an abuse of discretion. Mr. Calsada obtained a ruling vacating and remanded the Order so that the bankruptcy court can hold the required evidentiary hearing.]
In re Orlando Hidalgo (BAP) Memorandum 7/9/07
[Overruled Objection by Ch.7 Trustee to Debtor’s belated claim of Homestead Exemption on equitable title was successfully AFFIRMED on appeal]
In re Santos (BAP) Memorandum 7/11/07
[Summary Judgment on wage claim dispute against Debtors was REVERSED on appeal by Mr. Calsada]
In re Santos (BAP) Memorandum 12/20/05
[The Allowance of a Claim against Debtors without a trial was REVERSED on appeal by Mr. Calsada)
In re Flores (BAP) Memorandum 7/26/00
[Summary Judgment against Mr. Calsada’s lawsuit for wrongful foreclosure was REVERSED on appeal]
Kraft Case(CA2d) Memorandum 10/7/02
[Mr. Calsada’s Testimony as Bankruptcy Expert on appeal]
In re Bencomo I (9TH CIR. BAP)
[REVERSED AND REMANDED]
In re Bencomo II (9th Cir. BAP)
[REVERSED AND REMANDED] ON FURTHER APPEAL TO THE 9TH CIR.
In re Tinajero (9th Cir. BAP)
[REVERSED AND REMANDED] Judge Barry Russell’s Order Granting Summary Judgment for Fraud based on State Court Judgment was reversed and remanded where there was no record that Debtor’s misrepresentations in the purchase and sale of real property formed the basis for any fraud judgment or any damages based thereon.
In re Interworks Unlimited, Inc. (9th Cir. BAP)
[AFFIRMED] Judge Zurzolo’s dismissal of Chapter 7 Trustee Edward Wolkowtiz’s avoidance actions for $400k against Mr. Calsada’s client was upheld as untimely by the 9th Circuit BAP where the Trustee waited until the minute to file an adversary complaint and did so in the wrong bankruptcy case and then waited nearly 3 months before trying to fix the mix-up in filings.
In re Cadena (Judge Maureen Tighe) PUBLISHED DECISION
[SANCTIONS GRANTED AS REQUESTED BY MR. CALSADA] Judge Maureen Tighe granted $64,000 in sanctions against Putative Creditor and his Attorney for filing an Involuntary Bankruptcy Petition against Mr. Calsada’s client on a non-existent debt.
FLEXIBLE FUNDING LAWSUIT
Mr. Calsada successfully dismissed three lawsuits against account debtors for recovery of assigned invoices to a factoring company Flexible Funding. Each case was dismissed by the San Francisco Superior Court Law & Motion Dept. on account that: