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David Carr


David C. Carr ~ Ethics Lawyer

David C. Carr, an attorney in private practice in San Diego, California, specializes in ethics advice to lawyers, California State Bar discipline defense, and attorney licensing.

Mr. Carr is a 1986 graduate of Loyola Law School in Los Angeles. Following several years of practice in commercial law and business litigation, Mr. Carr joined the State Bar of California as a staff attorney in 1989. He served as counsel to the State Bar's audit and review panel from 1989 to 1992. Mr. Carr served on the National Organization of Bar Counsel's advisory committee to the American Bar Association's McKay Commission on discipline enforcement in 1991.

He moved from oversight of the discipline system in 1992 to prosecuting cases as a deputy trial counsel in the discipline prosecutor's office of the State Bar. After five years trying discipline, admissions and reinstatement cases before the State Bar Court Hearing Department, Mr. Carr began to specialize in appellate advocacy before the State Bar Court's Review Department, resulting in 10 published decisions between 1997 and 2000.

During the shutdown of the State Bar in 1998 after former Gov. Pete Wilson's veto of the State Bar dues bill, Mr. Carr worked as an unpaid volunteer in the discipline system. He argued as amicus counsel to the California Supreme Court that a special master be appointed to oversee discipline system spending, an idea adopted by the Supreme Court in its decision reviving the discipline system (In re Attorney Discipline System (1998) 19 Cal.4th 582.)

After the Supreme Court ordered a special dues assessment, Mr. Carr became an assistant chief trial counsel and manager of the general trials unit in Los Angeles in 1999. He also worked on discipline policy issues as the chief trial counsel's liaison with the State Bar's Committee on Professional Responsibility and Conduct (COPRAC) and the State Bar Court Executive Committee.

Mr. Carr returned to private practice in 2001 and his hometown of San Diego in 2002. He is a member of the San Diego County Bar Association, where he is active on the Legal Ethics Committee. Mr. Carr is a member of the Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers (APRL), the ABA Center for Professional Responsibility, and the Association of Discipline Defense Counsel (ADDC), where he served as president from 2008 through 2011. He is also a member of COPRAC for the 2018-2021 term.  As an adjunct faculty member, Mr. Carr has taught responsibility at the Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego.

Mr. Carr grew up in the South Bay suburbs of San Diego and attended high school in the small desert community of Borrego Springs. After high school, he attended UCLA, where he graduated with a degree in history in 1978.


  • Loyola Law School, Los Angeles, California
    • J.D. - 1986
  • UCLA
    • B.A. - 1977
    • Major: History
  • Borrego Springs High School

Classes & Seminars

  • Adjunct Faculty, Thomas Jefferson School of Law

Past Positions

  • Assistant Chief Trial Counsel, Manager, 1999-2001
  • Deputy Trial Counsel, Discipline Prosecutor, 1992-1999

Professional Associations

  • Association of Discipline Defense Counsel
  • Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers
  • Legal Ethics Committee, San Diego County Bar Association
  • Center for Professional Responsibility, American Bar Association
  • State Bar of California Standing Committee on Professional Responsibility and Conduct (COPRAC)
  • State Bar of California, 1989-2001

Current Employment Position

  • Ethics Lawyer

Practice Areas

  • State Bar Discipline Defense
  • Legal Ethics Advice
  • Bar Admission

Bar Admissions

  • California, 1986
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of California
  • U.S. District Court Central District of California
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of California

Representative Cases

  • In re Attorney Discipline System (1998) 19 Cal.4th 582
  • In the Matter of Thompson, 2010 WL 9010977, State Bar Court, 08–H–10952
  • In the Matter of Palmer, 2016 WL 364192, State Bar Court, 12–O–16924
  • In the Matter of Steele, 3 Cal. State Bar Ct. Rptr. 708, State Bar Court, 89–O–16879
  • In the Matter of Sullivan, 3 Cal. State Bar Ct. Rptr. 608, State Bar Court, 92-O-11298
  • In the Matter of Johnson, 4 Cal. State Bar Ct. Rptr. 179, State Bar Court, 96–O–05705

Contact Me Today

Law Office of David C. Carr is committed to answering your questions about expert testimony, legal ethics advice, conflicts and disqualification, fee disputes, reinstatement, bar admission, and discipline defense law issues in California.

I'll gladly discuss your case with you at your convenience. Contact me today to schedule an appointment.

Mailing Address

5694 Mission Center Rd
Box 602854
San Diego, CA 92108