Brian Byun

Of Counsel

Tel: (619) 525-1360


At a Glance

Brian advises cities and special districts on a variety of matters relating to Municipal Law, with a focus on land use, land disposition and development.
He also advises governing bodies on issues related to the Brown Act, the Political Reform Act and the Public Records Act.

Brian is a leader of various local, state and national Asian Pacific American bar associations.

Brian Byun is an attorney in Best Best & Krieger LLP’s San Diego office and is a member of the firm’s Municipal Law practice group. He regularly advises public agency clients, including cities and special districts, on various municipal government and regulatory issues, with a focus on land use, development and disposition matters. He also advises governing bodies on laws related to conflicts of interest, open and closed session meetings and campaign finance.
Municipal Law
Brian serves as assistant city attorney for community and economic development for the City of Ontario, designated counsel for the City of San Juan Capistrano’s Planning Commission, deputy city attorney for the cities of San Clemente, Palm Springs and Indian Wells, deputy general counsel to the Helix Water District and general counsel for the Fenner Valley Water Authority. He has also served as special counsel on land use, disposition, and development issues for the cities of Stanton, Malibu, San Jacinto and Santee and the Town of Hillsborough.

Prior to joining the firm, Brian served for several years as a senior deputy city attorney for the City of Vernon, where he advised the City Council, city-created commissions and all city departments (including Public Works, Public Utilities, Fire, Police, Health & Environmental Control, Human Resources and City Administration) on legal and strategic issues relating to:

  • procurement
  • contract drafting, negotiations and dispute resolution
  • resolution and ordinance drafting
  • creditors’ rights in bankruptcy
  • personnel investigation and disciplinary matters
  • dangerous condition litigation
  • the Brown Act
  • the California Public Records Act
  • conflicts of interest and
  • governance best practices.

Brian uses his extensive in-house generalist experience to provide timely and accurate advice and to ensure that the governing boards and councils he advises operate legally and effectively to best serve their constituents.  

Land Use, Disposition & Development
Brian works closely with his city and special district clients to help them achieve their policy goals related to the use, disposition and development of real property within their jurisdictions. Some recent representative projects include:

  • Repeal of the City of San Juan Capistrano’s Historic Town Center Master Plan, amendment of its General Plan and incorporation of its form-based code for the Historic Town Center into its existing Zoning Code;
  • Successful closing of Stanton Housing Authority’s matching Homekey grants totaling more than $5 million for conversion of two hotels into interim housing for people made homeless by COVID-19 and subsequently into permanent affordable housing;
  • Drafting and negotiation of disposition and development agreements, exclusive negotiation agreements and development agreements for affordable housing developments, mixed-use developments and commercial/industrial developments;
  • Drafting and negotiation of commercial lease amendments in light of COVID-19 and
  • Providing advice on applicability and procedural requirements of the Surplus Land Act and other California affordable housing laws.

Bankruptcy & Insolvency
Prior to his career in Municipal Law, Brian was, for almost a decade, a corporate bankruptcy and restructuring attorney at well-known law firms Cooley, Baker & McKenzie and Jeffer Mangels, representing various institutional and business clients in insolvency-related state and federal (including bankruptcy) court litigation, as well as in Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings, out-of-court liquidations and corporate restructurings.

Brian is active and has held leadership positions in various local, state and national Asian Pacific American bar associations. He lives in San Diego with his wife, two children and Chiweenie named Phoebe.


  • The George Washington University Law School, J.D., with honors
  • Columbia University, M.A., Modern Japanese Literature
  • Yale University, B.A., English


  • California
  • New York


  • Southern California Super Lawyers Rising Star, Bankruptcy, 2015

Contact Brian Byun

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