During these challenging times, Severson & Werson remains open and in full operation, consistent with the firm’s previously established contingency planning. While many of our attorneys and staff will be working remotely, as a firm, we continue in full operation. We are here to help, as always.

Special Counsel

John L. Kortum

John Kortum has litigated complex cases in state and federal courts since 1990. His clients have included state and federal public entities, a builder of freeways, skyscrapers, stadiums and residential structures, other contractors, a steel manufacturer, real estate developers, a national retail chain, insurance companies, numerous small businesses, an airline and a manufacturer of espresso machines.

John’s areas of the law include environmental litigation under CERCLA, RCRA, the Clean Water Act and Proposition 65, personal injury litigation involving construction site accidents, arising from a viral epidemic, automobile accidents related to construction projects, and asbestos exposure, property damage claims arising from construction projects, contract disputes often involving complex indemnity agreements, inverse condemnation suits arising from flooding, and administrative law including review of administrative decisions under California Code of Civil Procedure 1094.5.  At least two of these cases have involved cutting edge legal issues that have gone to the United States Supreme Court.


  • Georgetown University Law Center, J.D., 1990
  • University of California, Berkeley, B.A., 1983


  • California
  • U.S. District Court, Central District of California
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of California
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of California
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • United States Court of Federal Claims
  • United States Supreme Court