Jeffrey S. Behar


Jeffrey S. Behar is a founding partner of Ford, Walker, Haggerty & Behar and an experienced trial attorney. He concentrates his practice on aviation, premises, products, municipality defense, professional liability, employment, construction defect, and mass tort litigation.

Mr. Behar was one of the original founders of the law firm in 1991 and currently oversees its business development and management. His clients include many prestigious insurance firms, Fortune 500 companies and nationally recognized corporations.

Mr. Behar received a Bachelor of Arts from UCLA in 1974, graduating Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa. In 1978 he was awarded a J.D. and graduated with honors from Loyola Law School, where he was a recipient of the school’s American Jurisprudence Award.

In 1978, he began his legal career as an associate at the firm of Shield & Smith in Los Angeles. Joining the State Bar of California in 1978, Mr. Behar is also admitted to practice in the United States District Court. In 1982, he became a partner of the firm and eventually served as a member of the management committee.

In 1982, after only four years of practice, Mr. Behar was inducted into the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), which requires a minimum of 20 trials to jury verdict. He has also served on the Board of Directors of the California Defense Counsel (CDC) and is a member of the International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC), the International Society of Barristers (ISB), the Defense Research Institute (DRI), the Los Angeles County Bar Association (LACBA), and the American Bar Association (ABA).

In 2000, Mr. Behar became the President of the Association of Southern California Defense Counsel (ASCDC).

In 2004 and continuing to the present, Mr. Behar was elected and named as a Southern California Super Lawyer. Also in 2004 to the present, Mr. Behar has been named by Los Angeles Magazine as one of Southern California’s top attorneys.

In 2007, Mr. Behar was elected a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers (ACTL).

In 2011, Mr. Behar became a co-chairman for the annual ABOTA Masters in Trial program. He has spoken on litigation-related matters to the Los Angeles Trial Lawyers, the Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles, the Association of Southern California Defense Counsel and the American Society for Industrial Security. His presentations addressed such topics as settlement/mediation/arbitration, mock jury trials, construction defect litigation, shoplifting prevention for retail businesses, security practices/probable cause/detention arrest, and wrongful death damages.

In 2016 and in 2018, Mr. Behar was named “Lawyer of the Year” Personal Injury Litigation Defense – Orange County by Best Lawyers in America .

In 2018, Mr. Behar was elected to “America’s Top 100 Civil Defense Litigators.”

In 2023, Mr. Behar’s jury trial defense verdict in a highly publicized case on behalf of Fortune 500 Company was voted “TOP VERDICTS” for the year by the Los Angeles Daily Journal.

In 2024, Mr. Behar received the Martindale-Hubbell Award as AV Preeminent for Highest Level of Professional Excellence.

Mr. Behar has been featured in the Los Angeles Daily Journal as one of the top business rainmakers in Southern California. Newspaper and legal magazine articles featuring Mr. Behar include:

  • • Verdict magazine with respect to his presidency of the Association of Southern California Defense Counsel (2000) [PDF]
  • • California Lawyer publication with respect to a news media highly publicized jury trial on behalf of American Airlines, Inc. (2001) [PDF]
  • • Front page profile article from the Los Angeles Daily Journal (2000) [PDF]
  • • Article from the Los Angeles Daily Journal concerning another jury trial receiving news coverage (2003) [PDF]


From 2018 to 2020, Mr. Behar was elected and served as the President of the Virginia Country Club in Long Beach.

Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Mr. Behar and his wife Lori, together with children Alexander and Mallory, live in Manhattan Beach.

Bar Admissions

  • California, 1978; United States District Court


  • Graduated with honors from Loyola Law School, 1978
  • Graduated Magna Cum Laude from UCLA, 1974