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Kathryn Smith Root

Divorce and separation Attorney at Portland, OR

5.0   7 reviews

also known as Kathy Root

  • Licensed for 38 years
    State OR
    Acquired 1985
    Active No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About Kathryn

Learn Kathryn’s areas of practice.

Kathy is a leading authority on interstate and international custody disputes and provides legal advice and representation in cases involving international family law issues. A powerful litigator and tireless advocate for the interests of families and children, she has a special interest in contested child custody and parenting time disputes. Kathy has a strong commitment to helping clients through turbulent times by providing reliable legal information and advice focused on each client's needs and desire to find a better future. She has focused her practice on family law for 26 years. A member of the Oregon State Bar Family Law Section, she served for three years on its Executive Committee. She also served as Chair of the Oregon State Bar's Procedure And Practice Committee and is a former President of the Oregon Academy Of Family Law Practitioners. Kathy is now Vice-Chair of the International Law Committee of the American Bar Association's Family Law Section. When she's not working, you will often find Kathy on a golf course. She loves the challenge, rain or shine, of discovering the nuances of each course she plays.


Gevurtz Menashe Larson & Howe, PC
115 NW 1st Ave
Suite 400
Portland, OR, 97209

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5.0 / 5.0
  7 customer reviews
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Posted by Morgan | June 14, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
I had a very positive experience working with Kathy S. Root
I was recommended to Kathy S. Root for resolving a divorce case with a potentially complicated international child custody component to it. Kathy and her team were consistently courteous, professional, firm, and sober-minded, while also being empathetic regarding my experience and supportive of how I wished the case to proceed. Working together, we were able to reach what I feel was a fair and equitable solution without the expense and upset of going to court, which I am very grateful for. Kristin Willis and her team helped with the final paperwork and filing, and were exceptionally responsive and prompt in that regard. There is nothing fun about getting divorced, but my experience working with the people at Gevurtz Menashe was very positive overall and I would recommend them to anyone in a similar situation.
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Posted by Teresa | June 6, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
I wish to offer my sincerest thanks, appreciation, and highest recommendation for attorney Kathryn S. Root, and her Gevurtz Menashe team (Associate Attorney Tracy Connor and Legal Assistants Linda and Marie) for their collective expertise, efforts, professionalism, patience, and understanding throughout their work on my legal case. It had been both confusing and stressful over the years, as I had initially attempted to get legal help to resolve problems in the original paperwork from other legal counsel, with no luck. In a final attempt, I feel very fortunate to have found and received the legal help and guidance from Ms. Root and her team. We worked through several challenging obstacles, explaining legal terms and steps required along the way, and then ultimately receiving the required military calculation information for final negotiations and terms of the final documents. The goal was to file clarifying divorce military benefits paperwork, for the outcome of a revised court order to receive these benefits. After much effort by all, we received this new court order. In the beginning, I also stated that I wanted a first priority placed on keeping my kids out of the entire process, out of respect and sensitivity for them, as they should not be caught in the middle of this situation. Again, Ms. Root and her team responded with compassion and understanding for my request, and we proceeded with that in mind. Throughout the entire process, I felt like I was respected and given full support. For the first time, I felt as though I could trust that my legal counsel had the shared desire, and professional expertise, to achieve our goal, and be successful. Therefore, and without hesitation, I highly recommend Ms. Root of the Gevurtz Menashe firm, and am forever grateful for her commitment to helping me get through this difficult ordeal successfully.
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Posted by Susan | May 12, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Guidance through a very complicated messy divorce.
Kathy Root was the stable behind my dramatic divorce 13 years ago/ which is still proceeding with other issues to this day. Her guidance, her calm, her experience and depth of understanding of the law , her mindfulness of protecting me, the feeling that the "firm " was behind me and supportive is priceless. She made sure I was taken care of and my ex would not be able to undo his responsibility which to this day he has been attempting. If you need a brilliant lawyer to guide you, look no further I can't thank her enough and Linda White her assistant at the time. She still is standing behind the scenes in yet another messy battle which Shannon Hall is mastering as well. I am so grateful.
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Posted by Sarah | April 16, 2015
Highly Recommended
Ms. Root represented me in a Dissolution of Marriage case four years ago. She supported me in every decision, made correct recommendations based on her many years of experience, and I trust her. It was a difficult time. I have three children, who were very young. I got exactly what I wanted and needed. I will always be grateful.
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Posted by SARAH | March 20, 2014
recommended without reservation
Kathy was knowledgeable, efficient, precise and communicated well. I needed her services as advice in divorce mediation and she helped me find the information I needed to make informed choices. I found her an excellent resource.
Posted by anonymous | March 19, 2014
caring attorney, dissolution
I left an abusive spouse a year ago (March 2013) and had already asked Kathy to do the divorce. Through months of lack of money to live on, uncertainty, and stress, she kept me informed of what was happening on the legal front. She and her assistant did everything to speed the process along. The mediator she chose was great. I did not have go to court, and the settlement was very good. My ex was in contempt of court, but Kathy and her co-worker persuaded his attorney to pay up. Great job. Thanks to Kathy and CJ.
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Posted by Rob | May 30, 2013
Family Law Lawyer Review
Kathy actually handled two divorces for me. She was quick and straightforward as well. I have known her for 13 years... And she handled my pre-nup in the second marriage which was tested but held up. She has an excellent Paralegal.. Linda whom I have also known for 13 years... they make an exceptionnally easy to work with pair...
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AVVO RATING 10.0 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Shareholder
  • Gevurtz Menashe Larson Howe, PC
  • 2014 - Present
  • Of Counsel
  • Gevurtz Menashe Larson & Howe, PC
  • 2012 - 2014
  • Partner in Charge
  • McKinley Irvin
  • 2011 - 2012
  • Partner
  • Johnston, Root & Leibenguth, P.C.
  • 1989 - 2011
  • Associate Attorney
  • Johnston & Associates
  • 1985 - 1989
View all work experience


  • Northwestern School of Law
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • N/A
  • Lewis and Clark College
  • BS - Bachelor of Science
  • N/A


  • American Bar Association, Family Law Section, International Law Committee
  • Vice Chair
  • 2011 - Present
  • Oregon Women Lawyers Foundation
  • Advisory Board
  • 2008 - Present
  • Oregon State Bar
  • Member, Family Law Section
  • N/A
  • American Bar Association
  • Member, Family Law Section
  • N/A
  • Multnomah Bar Association
  • Member
  • N/A
  • American Bar Association, International Law Committee
  • Chair
  • 2004 - 2007
  • Oregon Women Lawyers Foundation
  • Board of Directors
  • 2003 - 2008
  • Oregon Women Lawyers Association
  • Vice President
  • 1990 - 1991
  • Multnomah Bar Association, Membership Committee
  • Chair
  • 1987 - 1989
  • Oregon State Bar, Procedure and Practice Committee
  • Member
  • 1987 - 1990
  • Multnomah Bar Association, Committee on the Status of Women in the Practice of Law
  • Member
  • 1987 - 1991
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Super Lawyer
  • Super Lawyers Magazine
  • 2013
  • Top 25 Women Oregon Super Lawyers
  • Super Lawyers Magazine
  • 2012
  • Super Lawyer
  • Oregon Super Lawyers
  • 2011
  • AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review Rated
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 2010
  • Super Lawyer
  • Oregon Super Lawyers
  • 2008
View all awards

Speaking Engagements

  • Oregon Family Law Practice for Paralegals
  • Assisting with Child Custody Issues and Parenting Time Disputes
  • 2006
  • Spring Conference
  • Legal Issues Relating to Litigation Under The Hague Abduction Convention
  • 2005
  • Family Law Section Annual Conference
  • Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act
  • 2001

Attorney endorsements

Received (6)
Given (4)
Endorse Kathryn
Family Attorney | Apr 19
Relationship: Other
"I am very pleased to endorse Kathy Root. I have worked with Kathy on American Bar Association activities for many years and have successfully referred clients to Kathy in Oregon. Kathy is a smart, talented attorney who is well-versed in divorce, family law and custody issues both at the national and international level. It is a pleasure to endorse Kathy to my colleagues."
Family Attorney | Oct 02
Relationship: Co-worker
"I endorse this lawyer. Kathy and I worked together at Gevurtz Menashe. Kathy is incredibly knowledgeable about Family Law. She is a fierce advocate for her clients and has earned the respect of the legal community."
Divorce and separation Attorney | May 18
Relationship: Co-worker
"I endorse this lawyer."
Family Attorney | Jun 27
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I endorse this lawyer for her skillful advocacy on behalf of clients nationally and internationally. Kathryn is deserving of her 'superb' rating. Lynn M. Myrick Grants Pass Oregon"
Unknown Attorney | Jan 17
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Family Attorney | Oct 22
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
View more endorsements
Divorce and separation
Estate planning

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Portland Divorce and separation Lawyer Kathryn Smith Root
Kathryn Smith Root
Divorce and separation Attorney
Portland, OR
Licensed for 38 years