Michael D. Weinstein

Year of Call: 2008

Michael D. Weinstein is an American lawyer who specializes in capital habeas cases.

Michael was called to the California State Bar in 2008. During his first two years as a lawyer, he served as a judicial law clerk to two federal trial judges in the Central District of California, the Honorable Philip S. Gutierrez (2008-09) and the Honorable J. Spencer Letts (2009-10). In helping both judges manage dockets of over 300 civil and criminal cases, Michael would research and clarify issues for them before drafting court
opinions on a weekly basis.

Michael’s clerkships led to a position with the Office of the Federal Public Defender for the Central District of California. As a Deputy Federal Public Defender, Michael primarily works on capital habeas cases, challenging the constitutionality of his clients’ first-degree murder convictions and death sentences . He also works on non-capital habeas cases, federal trials, and direct criminal appeals. Due to the nature of habeas litigation, Michael has gained in-depth experience in state and federal court, handling cases filed in all California state courts, including the California Supreme Court, various California-based district courts, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and the United States Supreme Court.

Because of Michael’s vast experience, Los Angeles law schools regularly invite him to sit on panels to discuss the criminal justice system and what it is like to be a public defender. He also helps supervise a capital habeas litigation clinic based out of Loyola Law School, Los Angeles. In 2014, the American Inns of Court selected Michael and one other American lawyer to serve as Pegasus Scholars. He spent six weeks in London in the spring of 2015 studying the English legal system.


Member of the California State Bar

Member of the Los Angeles Criminal Justice Inn of Court

Licensed to practice before all California state courts, the Northern District of California, the Central District of California, the Southern District of California, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and the United States Supreme Court