Ken has been in private practice since 1979 and has established himself as one of Washington State's preeminent family law practitioners. Ken assists clients in complex and high net-worth divorce or cohabitation matters typically involving business and professional practice valuation topics, property division and spousal maintenance issues. He regularly reviews and prepares pre- and post-nuptial agreements.
Ken also represents clients in civil litigation matters, including injury claims. He has successfully tried or mediated well over a thousand cases and regularly serves as a private mediator in family-law matters.
When not practicing law, Ken travels and collects Native American art, some of which is displayed at the Brewe Layman office in Everett. He also enjoys hiking and running.
Representative Matters & Engagements
Ken regularly represents business owners and professionals (or their spouses) in matters involving complicated and substantial ($1 million - $100 million +/-) estates. Ken's clients include business owners, physicians, judges, professionals, educators, accountants, athletes, and stay-at-home spouses.
Represented a Seattle business owner involving a multi-million dollar estate. Issues included disputes pertaining to a Prenuptial Agreement, long-term maintenance for a disabled spouse and disputes related to the character (separate or community) of a closely held business worth millions of dollars. Represented a Skagit Valley farmer in a divorce proceeding involving a long-term marriage and an estate including significant separate property farming acreage and a family-owned business. Represented a Canadian citizen in a Washington State divorce proceeding involving an international business headquartered in Ontario. Issues included alimony (maintenance) and the division of a significant multi-million dollar estate. Represented the estate of a retired gentleman killed in a crosswalk after being struck by a motor vehicle. Represented three physicians in a civil matter regarding the disputed and highly contentious dissolution of a surgical practice. Represented a Bellevue plastic surgeon in a divorce dispute related to the value of a thriving business which he acquired/commenced pre-marriage. Represented the wife/owner of a large (300+ employee) service business entity in a divorce proceeding involving issues related to separate property, alimony (maintenance) and the division of significant estate. Represented a man from Pierce County who lost a leg and suffered very serious injuries as a result of a drunk driver hitting him while he was traveling home from work on his motorcycle. Represented a world-renown author in a divorce dispute involving royalty and intellectual property issues associated with his writings.
Admitted to Practice
Washington State Bar Association (1979) United States Federal District Court (1981) United States Supreme Court (2013)
J.D., University of Puget Sound Law School (now Seattle University School of Law), 1979 B.A., University of Washington, 1976 (History and Political Science)
In Re the Marriage of Grigsby v. Grigsby, 110 Wn.App. 1026 (2002) Talley v. Talley. 97 Wn.App. 1077, 991 P.2d 94 (1999) In Re the Marriage of Harrington v. Harrington, 85 Wn.App. 613. 929 P.2d 1159 (1997) In Re the Marriage of Bulicek v. Bulicek, 59 Wn.App. 630, 800, P.2d 394 (1990)
Professional Recognition and Honors
Board Certification - National Board of Trial Advocacy (2015) "Super Lawyer" - Washington State (2001-2019) Selected as a Washington Top 100 Super Lawyer in Washington State (2015, 2016 and 2018) AV (very high to preeminent) rating by Martindale-Hubbell Top 100 Trial Lawyer - Washington State - The National Trial Lawyers (2008-2016) Selected to the "Best Lawyers" for Family Law (2012-2018) as noted in U.S. News and World Report Named "Lawyer of the Year" in Seattle for Family Law by "Best Lawyers" (2014) as noted in U.S. News and World Report Top 100 Litigation Lawyer - Washington State - American Society of Legal Advocates (2013-2015)
Member - Washington State Bar Association Member - Washington State Association for Justice (formerly the Washington State Trial Lawyers Association) Fellow - American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers
Author of numerous Family and Community Property Law Chapters in Washington Practice Editor of multiple chapters of the Washington Family Law Deskbook Frequent speaker at CLE seminars for attorneys and judges on various family law topics