Kara Ann Smith has been licensed to practice in California since 1983. Emphasizing a practical approach to problem solving and alternative dispute resolution, Kara has effectively represented and defended individuals and businesses in cases involving personal injury, products liability, premises liability, wrongful eviction, wrongful termination, landlord-tenant, professional negligence (including lawyers and real estate professionals), defamation, government tort liability, breach of contract, breaches of residential and commercial leases, intentional torts (including but not limited to fraud and deceit , intentional and negligent misrepresentation, assault, battery, false imprisonment).
Kara has an AV-rating by Martindale-Hubbell, signifying she has achieved the highest rating level possible in both Legal Ability and Ethical Standards. Kara has been practicing law in the San Francisco Bay Area for 30 years. She has worked as an Insurance Claims Supervisor with The Hartford Insurance Group in San Francisco and earlier as an inside and outside claim representative in San Francisco with The Hartford and also CSE (Civil Service Employees) Insurance Company.
Kara's extensive legal experience in over 15 California counties includes over 75 trials and hundreds of Mediations and Arbitrations, as well as thousands of depositions.
In addition to serving as Mediator and Arbitrator, Kara has been a Settlement Conference Panelist for the City and County of San Francisco and she has also defended CCSF and the Port of San Francisco in various cases. Kara completed 40 hours of intense Mediation training with Steven Rosenberg, Esq., in Mill Valley, Calif.
For the 15 years before joining VLA in 2004, Kara was a founding partner (1989 -2004) of Allswang, Smith and Walsh, with offices in San Francisco and Oakland.
She is a member of the State Bar of California, the American Bar Association and the Defense Counsel of Northern California.
In addition to California, Kara is licensed to practice law in Massachusetts.