David is litigation counsel whose preferred area of practice is serious personal injury. He has worked on a wide range of medical-legal, insurance and commercial litigation matters and has appeared at all levels of the British Columbia Courts. He also has extensive experience in mediations.
David is well known for his cycling advocacy work. He is regularly consulted by cyclists, cycling advocacy groups, private and non-private organizations, various media outlets, on issues affecting the cycling population. He has also been consulted by a variety of government and non-government stakeholders on urban planning and management relating to the safety and security of cyclists.
David brings a calm, reasoned approach to a typically emotional climate, and believes it is incumbent on lawyers to find cost effective, practical remedies to medical legal cases.
David is a partner in the Litigation group at Richards Buell Sutton LLP. He articled and practiced at a large downtown law firm before joining RBS as an associate in 1991 and partner in 2000. “Partnership is rewarding. It’s one of my proudest achievements because I enjoy my partners and have tremendous regard for them. Unlike many organizations, we are not driven by our individual egos but by a collective desire to serve our clients and balance our working lives. The nice thing about the firm is that we’re small enough to be personable but large enough to be effective for our clients.”
David’s motivation is to help individuals in difficult circumstances. “It’s all about empowering an individual in the face of adversity. Most people who become involved in litigation face overwhelming circumstances. The most satisfying thing about being a Trial lawyer is having a part in leveling a playing field typically unfavourable to individuals with limited resources."
David was named Queen's Counsel in 2015.
- President, CBA (BC) Benevolent Society
- Board of Governors, Trial Lawyers Association of BC
- Member, Law Society of British Columbia
- Member, Canadian Bar Association (C.B.A.)
- Honorary Member of the UBC Law Class of '62
- CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION
- David produced The Paisley Snail, a docu-drama about Donoghue v Stevenson, a seminal case in the law of negligence involving an allegation of a discovery of a partly decomposed snail in a bottle of ginger beer. The video was narrated by Martin Taylor Q.C. and shown on television stations and distributed in high schools and law schools throughout the common law world.
- David also produced an Afternoon with Lord Denning, the last television quality interview with the greatest jurist of all time.
- Regular Guest Instruction Law Society of British Columbia
- Moot Court Judge- University of British Columbia
- Member, Bicyclists' Injuries and the Urban Environment (B.I.C.E.), Steering Committee, studies through UBC and St. Paul's Hospital
- Member, Central Valley Greenway Capital Campaign Cabinet
- Member, Original Steering Committee for BEST (Better Environmentally Sound Transportation)
- Member, HUB
- Member, Arbutus Club
- Director, Pain BC
- Director, British Columbia Cycling Coalition
- Director and Provincial Grants Coordinator, Canadian Bar Association Benevolent Society
David's exceptional work in the personal litigation field is shaped by both personal experience and social altruism. He learned of the catastrophic consequences of motor vehicle accidents at a young age when his own father suffered devastating injuries in a car accident. "I saw very early on how the smallest amount of negligence can lead to enormous suffering and life-long change." As an adult, he developed a concern for the environment associated with the deleterious impact of automobiles. This became the seed for his passion for cycling and his belief in the role that cyclists and alternate means of transportation can play in the protection of the environment.
David is married and a father to two young girls. His daughters firmly believe he makes his living as a rock star. This is most likely due to his being, in fact, an incorrigible rocker and recording artist who sings, writes and performs songs, and occasionally misbehaves. Every year he participates in the CBA's Battle of the Bar Bands, winning the event in 2014. He also enjoys cycling, snowboarding and skiing, about which he says, "the goal is the soul".