Jay R. Nanavati

Counsel

Washington, D.C.
T 202.861.1747  |  F 202.861.1783

Jay Nanavati focuses his practice on white collar criminal defense, with an emphasis on criminal tax defense. He advises and represents individuals and entities facing some of the government’s most complex criminal tax investigations and prosecutions. Jay spent more than a decade as both a federal and a state prosecutor, developing a particular expertise in criminal tax enforcement. He is a veteran trial lawyer, having conducted 35 solo jury trials and hundreds of bench trials. He is focused on his clients’ goals and works collaboratively with his clients to reach those goals.

During his service as a federal prosecutor at the Department of Justice Tax Division, the U.S. government repeatedly recognized Jay’s work by presenting him with the Special Act of Service Award, the Special Commendation Award, and the Outstanding Attorney Award. He was also recognized by the IRS Criminal Investigation’s Seattle Field Office for his work on the investigation and prosecution of the promoters of one of the largest nationwide tax fraud schemes pursued by the Department of Justice. He is a regular contributor to the firm’s  Global Tax Enforcement blog.

Select Experience

  • Represents clients facing the full spectrum of criminal tax allegations, including failure to disclose foreign bank accounts, tax evasion, filing false tax returns, failure to pay over employment taxes, failure to file tax returns, obstruction of IRS enforcement efforts, tax shelter promotion, false refund claims, "Klein" conspiracy to defraud the U.S. government, and currency reporting violations.
  • Represented multi-national financial institution facing federal grand jury investigation for allegedly assisting U.S. taxpayers in evading their U.S. tax obligations.
  • Represented business owner facing federal grand jury investigation for the felonies of tax evasion and structuring cash transactions. The felony charges were abandoned and only a single charge of misdemeanor failure to file a tax return was brought.
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Experience

  • Represents clients facing the full spectrum of criminal tax allegations, including failure to disclose foreign bank accounts, tax evasion, filing false tax returns, failure to pay over employment taxes, failure to file tax returns, obstruction of IRS enforcement efforts, tax shelter promotion, false refund claims, "Klein" conspiracy to defraud the U.S. government, and currency reporting violations.
  • Represented multi-national financial institution facing federal grand jury investigation for allegedly assisting U.S. taxpayers in evading their U.S. tax obligations.
  • Represented businessman facing federal grand jury investigation for the felonies of tax evasion and structuring cash transactions. The felony charges were abandoned and only a single charge of misdemeanor failure to file a tax return was brought.
  • Represented owner of tax return preparation business in civil injunction suit brought by the Department of Justice Tax Division in federal district court. Defended lawsuit, which was settled.
  • Represented owner of healthcare company who was indicted by Virginia state authorities with multiple felonies arising from alleged failure to pay over employment taxes. Negotiated replacement of felony charges with misdemeanor charges.
  • Represented clients with undisclosed foreign bank accounts in the IRS’ Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP).
  • Represented clients who were unable to enter the OVDP and faced federal criminal charges related to their foreign bank accounts.
  • Represented real estate development firm at trial against the IRS in U.S. Tax Court regarding tax deduction for contribution of historic façade and interior easements to 501(c)(3) organization.

Recognitions

  • Martindale-Hubbell (AV Preeminent)
  • DOJ Tax Division
    • Outstanding Attorney Award (2009, 2010)
    • Special Commendation Award (2008)
    • Special Act or Service Award (2007)

Memberships

  • International Bar Association
  • American Bar Association: Civil and Criminal Tax Penalties Committee, White Collar Crime Committee
  • International Association of Prosecutors
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • Federal Bar Association: Taxation Section, Criminal Law Section
  • Virginia State Bar: Taxation Section, Criminal Law Section

Services

Prior Positions

  • Assistant Chief for the Department of Justice Tax Division’s Western Criminal Enforcement Section
  • Counsel to the Department of Justice Tax Division’s Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Criminal Matters
  • Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney for Fairfax County, Virginia
  • Law Clerk for the Chief Judge Hector M. Laffitte of the United States District Court for the District of Puerto Rico

Admissions

  • U.S. Tax Court
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Virginia
  • Virginia, 1999
  • District of Columbia, 2013

Education

  • J.D., University of Virginia School of Law, 1999, Order of the Coif, Virginia Law Review
  • B.A., Government and Foreign Affairs, University of Virginia, 1996, High Honors, Phi Beta Kappa, Echols Scholar

Blog

In The Blogs

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Global Tax Enforcement
U.S. Signs FATCA IGA with Luxembourg
March 31, 2014
On March 28, 2014, the U.S. signed a FATCA IGA with Luxembourg.  Under the IGA, banks and other financial institutions in Luxembourg will report information about eligible U.S. customers’ offshore accounts to the Luxembourg tax...
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Global Tax Enforcement
Levin and McCain Urge DOJ to Seek Extradition of Fugitive Swiss Bankers
March 27, 2014
Bloomberg news reports that on March 18, 2014, U.S. Senators Carl Levin and John McCain wrote a letter urging the Justice Department to seek extradition of about 30 Swiss bankers and others who are charged with enabling offshore tax...
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Global Tax Enforcement
IRS Report Announces Major Increase in Criminal Investigations for 2013
March 3, 2014
On February 24, 2014, IRS Criminal Investigation (“CI”) announced the release of its 2013 annual report, which reflected a significant increase in criminal investigations and prosecution recommendations in the past year.  According to the...
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Global Tax Enforcement
OECD Publishes Standard for International Automatic Tax Information Exchange
February 17, 2014
On February 13, 2014, the OECD published a standard for the automatic exchange of tax information among governments, intended to help fight cross-border tax evasion. Under the standard, governments would collect information from their...
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Global Tax Enforcement
IRS Fighting Hard to Avoid Tea Party Class Action Claims
February 15, 2014
The IRS recently filed a motion to dismiss class action claims brought by Tea Party groups.  In NorCal Tea Party Patriots, et. al. v. IRS, et. al., S.D. Ohio, Case No. 1:13-cv-00341, Tea Party groups asserted that the IRS singled out their...
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