Shirley L. Kovar


Shirley L. Kovar is an Estate & Trust Litigation partner with Henderson, Caverly, Pum & Trytten LLP. Ms. Kovar’s practice focuses on complex trust and estate litigation.

Ms. Kovar is co-editor of the recently-published Matthew Bender Practice Guide on California Trust Litigation.

Ms. Kovar is certified as a Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization. She is a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (“ACTEC”), where she has chaired the Transfer Tax Study Committee and is a member of the Litigation Committee. She has served as Chair of the Litigation Committee for the Executive Committee of the State Bar Trusts and Estates Section (“TEXCOM”), where she also served as the Liaison between TEXCOM and the California Law Revision Commission on no contest clause reform. She has been selected as a Southern California Super Lawyer each year from 2007 to present.

The President of ACTEC has recently appointed Shirley to the Joint Editorial Board (JEB) for ACTEC, the American Bar Association and the Uniform Law Commission.  The JEB is responsible for reviewing and revising proposed Uniform Trust & Estate Codes.

Ms. Kovar graduated in 1974 from the University of Kansas Law School, where she was elected to the Order of the Coif, as Editor-in-Chief of the Kansas Law Review, and was co-recipient of the Samuel Mellinger Award, awarded by the law faculty for Leadership, Scholarship and Service, and by the University of Kansas as Outstanding Woman Graduate in Academics for all graduate schools at the University of Kansas.

Ms. Kovar is an Academician in the International Academy of Estate and Trust Law.

Ms. Kovar has spoken and written extensively in the areas of trusts and estates disputes and federal estate tax reform, including oral and written testimony before the U.S. Senate Finance Committee on portability and federal estate tax reform.