ALBERT C. LUM
Attorney motto: Always keep the client’s best interests at heart
Albert C. Lum has been in the business of helping small and new businesses since 1964, when he first opened his law practice in the heart of Chinatown. His law career began with supporting and assisting Chinese restaurant owners who were not familiar with US law and struggled to find common ground with the attorneys available to them. As a third generation Chinese American, Albert C. Lum felt compelled to help his community.
Albert C. Lum is a third generation Chinese American. In 1910, his ancestor, Charlie Lum, emigrated to the United States from Xinhui, Guangdong, China. He first settled in Mississippi, where he met his wife, Bertha Lum who was American born. Together, they moved to West Memphis, Arkansas, where they raised a family of four boys and two girls. Albert C. Lum was the youngest child in the family, born January 21, 1934.
In West Memphis, Arkansas, Albert Lum and his siblings were the only Chinese Americans in their schools, and one of the few Chinese Americans in southern United States. As a result, young Chinese Americans stuck together, making connections across city and state lines. Albert C. Lum, too, often traveled to different cities, even to other states, to meet other young Chinese Americans like himself.
To this day, Albert C. Lum sticks with the Asian-American community, supporting any efforts to improve life for Asian-Americans.
Albert C. Lum obtained his J.D. from University of Southern California Gould School of Law in 1965. Prior to that, Albert C. Lum had graduated from Tulane University in 1958 with a B.B.A in Accounting.
- California State Bar, 1963 United States District Court
- Central District of California United States District Court
- Southern District of California United States Court of Appeals
- First Circuit United States Court of Appeals
- Third Circuit United States Court of Appeals
- Fifth Circuit United States Court of Appeals
- Seventh Circuit United States Court of Appeals
Albert Lum is a third generation Chinese American. In 1910, Charlie Lum immigrated to the United States from Xinhui, in Guangdong Province, China. He immigrated to Mississippi. There he met Bertha Lum, who was born in Mississippi. They moved to West Memphis, Arkansas. There in West Memphis, Arkansas they raised a family of 4 boys and 2 girls. Albert C. Lum was the youngest child in the family. He was born on January 21, 1934. As a young Chinese-American boy in the southern United States, Albert Lum was one of the few Chinese Americans growing up in the southern United States. He and his siblings were the only Chinese Americans in their schools. In the early years the Chinese Americans would get together from surrounding states at parties and gatherings. Most were Cantonese, as was Albert. More than once did Albert Lum have to travel over a few state lines to meet with other Chinese Americans.
In 1954, he joined the Army for two years. After being in the Army for two years, he attended Tulane University, a prestigious university located in New Orleans, Louisiana. After graduating from Tulane in 1958 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting, he decided to go west to Los Angeles, California, where his eldest sister, Frances, was working for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) as a tax auditor. Albert joined his sister at the IRS, also working as a tax auditor. At the same time, he began the study of law, attending the University of Southern California (USC). In 1965, he obtained his J.D. from USC. He passed the California State Bar in 1963, becoming a California attorney, prior to obtaining his J.D..
After one year of working for a small firm, Albert Lum started his own practice. He began his practice in Chinatown, near downtown Los Angeles, the main hub for Chinese Americans in the 1960s. From the very beginning of his practice, he worked to help small Chinese business owners to maneuver through the intricacies of the American legal system. At one point he represented many businesses, including a majority of the Chinese restaurants, in Chinatown. He was a business attorney for his clients with his education and tax training.. He did real estate law for his clients, based upon his experience at the IRS and his real estate broker’s license. Based on his clients’ needs he branched out into the area of immigration Business immigration extended to family immigration. Those families started their own businesses. They brought over relatives and Albert Lum helped them, too.
During his years of practice he has also been involved in the Chinese American community.
He was the president of the Los Angeles Chinese Chamber of Commerce. He was Chairman of the Chinatown Advisory Committee to the Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA). In 1975, he was part of the founding group of the Southern California Chinese Lawyer’s Association (SCCLA), the first Asian American lawyer’s law association in the United States. The association was founded after he and other attorneys had a meeting where the late Judge Delbert H. Wong, the first Asian American judge in the United States, and a close friend of Albert Lum, suggested that it would be a good idea to have such an organization. Albert Lum was the first president of SCCLA in 1976.
In the realm of government, he campaigned for Governor Jerry Brown during his first term as governor in. He supported Senator Feinstein in her unsuccessful campaign for governor, and then later, in her successful campaign for the U.S. Senate. He was a strong supporter of Michael Dukakis in his unsuccessful campaign for United States president in 1988, and was chairman of the support group of Chinese.
In 1985, Albert Lum was the lead attorney in the case of Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association (CCBA) v. _______, where the CCBA sued because of the inclusion of their name in a derogatory fashion in the film, “Year of the Dragon” which focused on Chinese gangs and needlessly created a connection between the CCBA and Chinese gangs. The movie was criticized by many for its racist and stereotypical portrayal of Chinese-Americans. The movie included a picture of the CCBA sign in Los Angeles, although the film ostensibly took place in New York. The suit resulted in a disclaimer being placed at the beginning of the film,
his film does not intend to demean or to ignore the many positive features of Asian Americans and specifically Chinese American communities. Any similarity between the depiction in this film and any association, organization, individual or Chinatown that exists in real life is accidental.”
In the early 1980s, Albert Lum was the lead attorney in a case filed by his law firm in response to redistricting of voting districts by the city of Los Angeles in 1982. Lum successfully forced the city of Los Angeles to redraw its redistricting plans after it was pointed out that Chinese communities and other Asian communities, notably the Korean community near downtown Los Angeles, had been carved up to reduce their political influence while enhancing others’ influence despite the growing numbers and concentration of Chinese and Korean residents in areas of the city.
Albert Lum has been an active participant in the community. He is a 40 year member of the Chinese American Citizen Alliance. He was a member of the Lions Club. He has previously served as a lecturer at Pasadena Community College, East Los Angeles City College, and Los Angeles City College.
When you reach out to Albert C. Lum, you can trust that he has your best interests at heart, integrity you can bet on, and the experience to take you through.