Private Wealth Planning

Counseling Families

Our Private Wealth lawyers understand that long-term relationships with families are built on trust and require a lawyer’s personal dedication, commitment, and sound judgment. The diversity and geographic distribution of BakerHostetler’s Private Wealth lawyers allows us to connect with families where they reside and do business.

Family Legacy Planning

A family’s legacy is built on tailored planning designed to serve multiple generations. We provide advice on planning with trusts and other entities to achieve tax efficient protection asset and management. Legacy planning often starts with gifting of assets and can involve a wide array of techniques and structures. Our lawyers are experienced in all types of gifting vehicles, which often combine trusts with partnerships, limited liability companies, and corporations. We coordinate a client’s lifetime gifting strategies with their estate planning documents to achieve continuity of management and tax savings over several generations.

Tax Experience

Each of our Private Wealth lawyers is a trained tax attorney. We rely on our keen tax understanding in structuring a family’s estate plan to maximize economic benefits for future generations. When it is necessary to deal directly with the Internal Revenue Service or state taxing authorities, our lawyers are experienced in taking the lead role in audits, appeals, and court proceedings. We look for opportunities to work with a client’s accountants and other advisers because we believe the best results are obtained through collaborative efforts.

Philanthropy

In many cases, family legacy planning involves the use of family-controlled charities. We understand the critical importance of philanthropy as a family objective and can arrange gifts that are most tax advantageous. We counsel families on how to use charitable entities to further their values and charitable interests.

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Counseling Businesses

Many of BakerHostetler’s largest and most successful clients are family-owned businesses. We understand the importance of carefully drawn corporate governing documents, including buy-sell agreements, transfer restrictions, and voting/non-voting stock, but more importantly we are attuned to the personal dynamics inherent in a family-owned business. Our clients value this combination of legal experience and practical, sensitive counsel.

Corporate Governance

One of our strengths is integrating a client’s business ownership with family legacy planning. We work with families and their other advisers to create corporate governance structures and procedures while adhering to family dynamics and objectives. In drafting long-term trusts, we often suggest the use of Family Business Advisers and/or Trust Protectors to vote company stock owned in trust. We understand the importance of providing special protections for a trustee if a trust owns a concentrated position in a family-owned business.

Succession Planning

The decision whether to transfer ownership and/or control of a family business to the next generation is one of the most important, but often most challenging, decisions facing a senior generation business owner. Our team has guided many companies through this process and often utilizes sophisticated techniques to achieve maximum tax benefits. Clients especially appreciate our quantitative analysis, which assists in choosing among the best approach available to transfer value.

Professionals

Name Title Office Email
Oakley V. Andrews Partner Cleveland
Edward J. Beckwith Partner Washington, D.C.
Lisa M. Burkdall Counsel Costa Mesa
James P. Casey Associate Costa Mesa
William J. Culbertson Counsel Cleveland
Leah E. DeLancey Partner Costa Mesa
Ashley L. Dietrich Associate Denver
Jennifer L. Eschedor Counsel Cleveland
Christopher D. Fidler Partner Columbus
Robert R. Galloway Partner Cleveland
Theodore Z. Gelt Of Counsel Denver
Ellen E. Halfon Counsel Cleveland
Herbert W. Kalmbach Of Counsel Costa Mesa
Robert K. Lease Partner Cleveland
Gordon F. Litt Partner Columbus
Chad W. Makuch Associate Cleveland
George T. Mooradian Partner Costa Mesa
Lisa A. Roberts-Mamone Partner Cleveland
Kevin G. Robertson Partner Cleveland
Barry R. Robinson Partner Columbus
Jeannette Owen Roegge Counsel Washington, D.C.
Daniela Ronchetti Associate Denver
Anthony J. Scaletta Partner Orlando
Mark D. Senff Partner Columbus
Michelle M. St. Pierre Partner Denver
David L. Starbuck Partner Denver
Michael R. Stiff Partner Denver
Raymond L. Sutton Jr. Partner Denver
Joseph F. Verciglio Partner Cleveland
Samantha M. White Associate Denver

Recognition

  • BakerHostetler received a 2014 “Best Law Firms” National Tier 1 Ranking in the area of Trusts & Estates Law from U.S. News – Best Lawyers®.
    • Regional Tier 1 rankings were earned in Trusts & Estates Law in Cleveland, Colorado, Columbus and Washington, DC.
  • Twelve partners were selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© 2014 in various private wealth-related fields.
    Copyright 2013 by Woodward/White, Inc., of Aiken, SC.

Key Contacts

Blog

In The Blogs

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WealthDirector
SEC “Common Trust Fund” Exception Narrowly Construed for Private Trust Companies
April 16, 2014
Recent years have seen a dramatic increase in the number of Private Trust Companies (“PTCs”) established by wealthy families.  PTCs are used to consolidate the trustee function of multiple trusts within a family, and because these trusts...
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WealthDirector
IRS Issues Warnings about Email and Telephone Tax Scams
April 15, 2014
As the 2014 tax filing season progresses the Internal Revenue Service has issued warnings to taxpayers about convincing fraudulent email messages and telephone calls seeking payments or personal information that will enable the scammer to...
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WealthDirector
The Waiting Game: What to Do (and Not Do) While an Exemption Application is Pending
April 9, 2014
So, you have thoughtfully and thoroughly prepared the Form 1023 Application for Recognition of Exemption Under Section 501(c)(3) (“Form 1023” or “application”) on behalf of a charity, and filed it with the IRS along with a completed...
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WealthDirector
U.S.TAX COURT DECISION MAY ALLEVIATE THE 3.8% NET INVESTMENT INCOME TAX BURDEN FOR MANY TRUSTS
March 31, 2014
Because trusts are subject to the 3.8% Net Investment Income Tax at a very low income level, $12,150 for 2014, trustees of trusts owning interests in operating entities have been considering ways to meet the material participation...
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WealthDirector
Will Camp Tax Plan Impact Charitable Giving and Tax-exempt Organizations?
March 26, 2014
In late February 2014, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI) released a nearly 1,000 page discussion draft addressing tax reform.  Chairman Camp’s proposal includes changes to numerous sections of the Internal Revenue...
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