David A. Tilem

David A. Tilem

Glendale, California

David Tilem, the founder of the Law Offices of David A. Tilem, is the bankruptcy ‘pro’ with 30 years of expertise in the area of bankruptcy law representing anyone and everyone who has any interaction with bankruptcy laws. He has practiced since 1983 either as the owner or partner of the firm. Prior to founding the Law Offices of David A. Tilem, he served as a partner at Tilem & White LLP formed in 1992.

Mr. Tilem serves as general or special counsel for business and individual debtors, secured and unsecured creditors, creditor committees and bankruptcy trustees. He represents clients in appeals through the Ninth Court of Appeals and also provides expert witness and consulting services.  He served as an active member of the pro bono Mediation Panel sponsored by the Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California for over ten years. Mr. Tilem has built a reputation as an expert witness appearing in family law proceedings to discuss the impact of bankruptcy law.

Mr. Tilem’s expertise in bankruptcy law is multifaceted: In 1995, he was certified by the American Board of Certification as a Business Bankruptcy Specialist. Two years later he received certification as a Bankruptcy Specialist by the State Bar of California, Board of Legal Specialization. From 2003 – 2007, Mr. Tilem served as a board member and chair of the State Bar Advisory Commission which writes, sponsors and grades the examination for California attorneys who wish to be certified as bankruptcy specialists.  Named by Los Angeles Magazine to the “Super Lawyer List for Southern California” for each year the list has existed, Mr. Tilem also enjoys  a top AV rating with Martindale – Hubbell, a national rating systems for lawyers throughout the U.S.

Mr. Tilem is the author of several, well respected legal articles and text book chapters on bankruptcy law. He was a member and occasional speaker for numerous professional associations and organizations including the American Bankruptcy Institute, the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys (serving for more than 10 years as local chair for the Central District of California), the Los Angeles County Bar Association (as a member of the Board of Trustees), the Los Angeles County Bar Association Section on Commercial Law and Bankruptcy (where he served as Chair), the Los Angeles Bankruptcy Forum, the Financial Lawyers Conference and the Los Angeles Bankruptcy Inn of Court (as a memer of its Board of Directors).

In 2004 Mr. Tilem conceived and founded the Central District Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys Association. The group is now the 2nd largest bar association of its type in the U.S.A.  He has served as its President and continues to serve on its Board as a Member Emeritus.

Mr. Tilem is a graduate of Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, where he earned his Juris Doctorate, and Brown University, where he received a Bachelors degree in Political Science. He is admitted to practice law in California and Massachusetts (inactive status).

In David’s spare time he enjoys travel, foreign languages, music, politics and current events, and spending time with family and friends.

Areas of Practice

  • Bankruptcy Law

Litigation Percentage

  • 25% of Practice Devoted to Litigation

Bar Admissions

  • Massachusetts, 1983
  • California, 1981
  • U.S. District Court Central District of California, 1982
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of California, 1982
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of California, 1982
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of California, 1982
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 9th Circuit, 1983
  • U.S. Tax Court, 1982


  • Loyola Law School, Los Angeles, California
    • J.D. - 1981
  • Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island
    • B.A. - 1978

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • California Bankruptcy Forum, 1985 - Present
  • Commercial Law League, Bankruptcy and Insolvency Section, 1985 - Present
  • Los Angeles County Bar Association, Commercial Law and Bankruptcy Section, 1985 - Present

Past Employment Positions

  • Tilem, Buxbaum & Askenaizer, Partner, 1989 - 1991


  • Spanish