David YoungsmithDavid Youngsmith is a Certified Family Law Specialist, and a principal of Hersh FamilyLaw Practice. He practices exclusively family law, and has extensive experience representing clients in all types of family law matters, i.e., dissolution of marriage, legal separation and annulments, marital property division, custody, child support, and spousal support. David's main focus is high asset cases involving complex financial issues, which he has handled through all aspects of family law litigation, including hearings, trial, mediation, and settlement negotiations. David has also represented clients in several family law appellate matters, including the respondent in the published spousal support opinion, In re Marriage of Priem (2013) 214 Cal.App.4th 505.
Whatever the circumstances of a particular case, David feels that the role of a good family law attorney is to solve problems and to resolve cases in an efficient and cost-effective way. In keeping with this view, David approaches his cases thoughtfully, intelligently, creatively, and strategically. David also applies his problem-solving skills to help the greater Bay Area family law community, including the Marin County and San Francisco County Superior Courts, where he serves as a family law settlement master. As a settlement master, David helps parties resolve their disputes before they undertake the considerable economic and emotional costs of a trial. Most cases in which David is involved settle, whether he is resolving them as a family law settlement master or as counsel representing Hersh FamilyLaw Practice clients.
Prior to joining Hersh FamilyLaw Practice in 2006, David had his own San Francisco family law practice. Before starting that practice in 2002, David was a Managing Editor at LexisNexis Matthew Bender, a leading provider of law practice and legal research tools, where he was responsible for several family law publications, including California Family Law Practice and Procedure, 2nd Edition, the California Family Law Litigation Guide, and the California Family Law Monthly. While at Matthew Bender, David received various editorial awards for his contributions to the creation of family law practice tools, including an innovation prize and an American Bar Association award for establishing a series of live Matthew Bender family law programs in several California locations.
In addition to his family law practice and legal publishing experience, David was an Adjunct Professor of Law at Golden Gate University School of Law, where he taught Legal Writing and Research. David has also been a speaker at family law continuing education programs, including the Bar Association of San Francisco's "Annual Family Law Developments and Strategies" seminar. David is admitted to practice in California, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and the United States District Court, Northern California. He is a member of several family law professional organizations, including the California State Bar Family Law Section, the Bar Association of San Francisco Family Law Section, and the Marin County Bar Association Family Law Section. He has been the Chair of the Bar Association of San Francisco, Barristers Club Family Law Section and the Vice-Chair of the Law Journal Editorial Board Committee.
David holds a J.D. from Golden Gate University School of Law (1984) and a B.A. in English from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst (1977).