LOS ANGELES (January 2015)—Los Angeles magazine and Law and Politics named David Codell a Southern California "Super Lawyer" for the tenth consecutive year. The honor is limited to five percent of the attorneys in the region.
David Codell Receives Humanitarian Award
LOS ANGELES (June 2, 2013)—Los Angeles synagogue Beth Chayim Chadashim has presented David Codell with its annual Herman Humanitarian Award in honor of his pro bono advocacy on behalf of the LGBT community, including his advocacy in support of marriage equality. The award was presented to Codell by Los Angeles Mayor-Elect Eric Garcetti at the synagogue’s annual awards brunch in downtown Los Angeles on Sunday, June 2, 2013. Beth Chayim Chadashim was the world’s first synagogue founded by and for gay and lesbian persons.
Photo credit: MarciaPerelPhotography.com
David Codell Becomes Visiting Legal Director and Senior Legal Scholar of the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law
LOS ANGELES (November 27, 2012)—The Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law has named David Codell the Visiting Legal Director and Arnold D. Kassoy Senior Scholar of Law. The Williams Institute is a national think tank at UCLA School of Law dedicated to conducting rigorous, independent research on sexual orientation and gender identity law and public policy. While maintaining his law practice in Los Angeles, Codell will also for one year oversee the Institute’s legal programs, including submission of amicus briefs in key court cases, research on state and federal anti-discrimination policies, and education programs for judges, lawyers and law students. See http://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/experts/david-codell/.
Ninth Circuit Rules that California’s Proposition 8 Is Unconstitutional
SAN FRANCISCO (February 7, 2012)—The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled that California’s Proposition 8, which prohibits same-sex couples from marrying, violates the Equal Protection Clause of the United States Constitution. The ruling is the first federal appeals court decision striking down a statewide ban on marriage for same-sex couples. David Codell, along with co-counsel from Caldwell Leslie & Proctor, PC, filed an amicus brief on behalf of Equality California, California’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender civil rights organization. The brief argued that Proposition 8 served no legitimate government interest, but instead discriminated against same-sex couples simply for the purpose of drawing a distinction between same-sex couples and married heterosexual couples. The Ninth Circuit reached the same conclusion, explaining: “Proposition 8 serves no purpose, and has no effect, other than to lessen the status and human dignity of gays and lesbians in California and to officially reclassify their relationships and families as inferior to those of opposite-sex couples. The Constitution simply does not allow for laws of this sort.”
California Supreme Court Upholds Marriages of an Estimated 18,000 Same-Sex Couples
SAN FRANCISCO (May 26, 2009)—The California Supreme Court ruled that an estimated 18,000 same-sex couples that married in California between June 2008 and the enactment of Proposition 8 in November 2008 are valid. In the case, David Codell represented Equality California and six same-sex couples along with co-counsel from the National Center for Lesbian Rights, Lambda Legal, the ACLU, Munger, Tolles & Olson, and Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe.
Federal Employee Obtains Monetary Award for Denial of Health Benefits for Same-Sex Spouse
LOS ANGELES (November 18, 2009)—In the first ruling of its kind, Judge Stephen Reinhardt of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ordered that back pay be awarded to a federal employee who had been denied health insurance benefits for his same-sex spouse. Deputy Public Defender Brad Levenson legally married Tony Sears in California in 2008, but the government denied health, vision, and dental benefits for Mr. Sears on the purported ground that provision of such benefits would be in violation of the federal so-called Defense of Marriage Act. David Codell, along with co-counsel from Caldwell Leslie & Proctor, PC, successfully argued that Mr. Levenson was entitled to back-pay because the denial of benefits violated the anti-discrimination requirements of the Ninth Circuit’s internal employment rules. This case is the first in the nation’s history in which a federal employee succeeded in obtaining financial compensation based on discrimination against a same-sex spouse.
Appellate Court Rules that Actor Robert De Niro Is Not Liable for Film Production Expenses Incurred Following Cancer Diagnosis
LOS ANGELES (June 15, 2009)—In a case successfully argued on appeal by David Codell, the California Court of Appeal held that actor Robert De Niro was not liable for cast insurance expenses incurred as a result of his cancer diagnosis during production of the film Hide and Seek. David Codell represented Mr. De Niro on appeal with co-counsel Christopher Caldwell, Robyn Crowther, and Jeanne Fugate of Caldwell Leslie & Proctor, PC.
Orange County Equality Coalition Names David Codell Lawyer of the Year
IRVINE (February 28, 2009)—The Orange County Equality Coalition, an organization devoted to achieving full equality for all people, named David Codell Lawyer of the Year in recognition of his work for equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender persons, including his work for marriage equality.
David Codell Receives Liberty Award from Lambda Legal
LOS ANGELES (October 2, 2008)—Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund presented David Codell with its Liberty Award in honor of his work as co-counsel in the landmark California Supreme Court Marriage Cases and his continual work on behalf of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender persons in many cases since 1999, including his role as lead counsel in litigation upholding California's historic domestic partnership laws and his litigation supporting the free speech rights of public high school students. The award was presented to Mr. Codell at an event at the Directors Guild of America.
David Codell Honored by ACLU of Southern California
LOS ANGELES (September 14, 2008)—The ACLU of Southern California presented its Coalition for Justice Award to David Codell, Shannon Minter of the National Center for Lesbian Rights, Jon Davidson and Jennifer Pizer of Lambda Legal, and Stephen Bomse of Heller Ehrman LLP for their joint work as co-counsel for plaintiffs in the California Marriage Cases, in which the California Supreme Court held that same-sex couples have the right to marry under the California Constitution.
California Supreme Court Rules Same-Sex Couples Must Be Permitted To Marry
SAN FRANCISCO (May 15, 2008)—The California Supreme Court issued a historic ruling, holding that the California Constitution requires the state to permit same-sex couples to marry. California is now the second state in the country, after Massachusetts, in which gay and lesbian couples have the right to marry. In its ruling, the California Supreme Court became the first state high court in the nation to rule that laws that discriminate based on sexual orientation are presumptively invalid and subject to the strictest level of constitutional scrutiny. David Codell is co-counsel with the National Center for Lesbian Rights, the ACLU, and Lambda Legal on behalf of plaintiffs Equality California, Our Family Coalition, and twelve same-sex couples seeking the right to marry. See In re Marriage Cases, 43 Cal.4th 757 (2008).
Court of Appeal Rejects Reverse Discrimination Lawsuit
SAN JOSE (March 5, 2008)—The Sixth District Court of Appeal in San Jose, California has rejected the lawsuit of a white television news anchor who alleged that he was the victim of "reverse discrimination" when his employment contract was not renewed in 2003. The Court of Appeal found that there was no evidence of discrimination. David Codell successfully handled the appeal for the television station where the anchor worked and a major television network. See Hicks v. KNTV Television, Inc., 160 Cal.App.4th 994 (2008).