Carol K. Kao

Partner | San Diego, Rancho Santa Fe

Carol is a partner in the private client and tax team.

She has provided confidential personal estate and tax planning services to private clients for over 25 years. She focuses on wealth transfers for successful families, sophisticated estate and gift tax saving techniques, charitable planned giving, family private foundations, business succession planning, complex probate and trust administrations, and resolving estate and gift tax audits. Prior to joining Withers, Carol was a partner in the law firm of Luce Forward Hamilton & Scripps LLP/McKenna Long & Aldridge LLP. She was also a certified public accountant with Arthur Andersen before starting her legal career.

She has been named as one of the ‘Best Lawyers in America’ since 2006. She has also been named one of ‘Southern California Super Lawyers,’ and ranked as one of the ‘Top 25 Women Attorneys’ and one of the ‘Top 50 Attorneys’ in San Diego by San Diego Super Lawyers. She has a Martindale-Hubbell® AV Rating and has been ranked in The Daily Transcript: San Diego County Top Attorneys, as well as being a recipient of State Bar of California’s Wiley W. Manuel Award for Pro Bono Legal Services and the San Diego Volunteer Program’s Distinguished Service Award.

Secretary Lynsey Boatman





State of California, 1991

New Proposition Threatens California’s Real Property Tax Haven,’ Accounting Today - September 2, 2020, quoted

‘Ruling Provides Guidance On Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts,’ Daily Journal - May 19, 2020, co-author

California State Bar

California State Bar Tax-Exempt Organizations Committee

American College of Trust and Estate Counsel

ITEP- Income Tax for Estate Planners’, UCLA/CEB Estate Planning Institute

‘Trustee’s Discretion- The Spectrum’, San Diego County Bar Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law Section

‘Family Limited Partnerships- What’s Next?’ San Diego County Bar Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law Section



  • English





San Diego

101 West Broadway,

Suite 1000,

CA 92101

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Rancho Santa Fe

6050 El Tordo,

PO Box 2329,

CA 92067

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