Kardashian was born to a prosperous Armenian-American couple in Los Angeles. Kardashian earned a law degree from the University of San Diego and practiced for about a decade; after that, he went into business. He did not enter a courtroom again until Simpson's trial.
Kardashian and Simpson first met in the early 1970s and had become close friends. When Simpson was charged with murder, it had been 20 years since Kardashian was last in a courtroom. Kardashian, a graduate of University of San Diego School of Law, had let his license to practice law expire three years before. He reactivated his license to aid in Simpson's defense, as a volunteer on his legal team. Kardashian sat by Simpson throughout the trial.
In the days following the murders of Nicole Simpson and Ronald Goldman, O.J. Simpson stayed in Kardashian's house. Kardashian was the man seen carrying Simpson's garment bag the day Simpson flew back from Chicago. Prosecutors speculated the bag may have contained Simpson's bloody clothes and/or the murder weapon, but that was never proven, and examination of what was alleged to be the bag months later revealed no evidence.
Some time after the trial, Kardashian expressed doubts about Simpson's innocence; The California bar later investigated. Although this strained his relationship with Simpson at the time, by the time of Kardashian's death they had "put it aside"; After his death, Simpson said, "Bob was there when I needed him most."