Jonathan M. Forster


Washington, D.C.
T +1.202.861.1684
F +1.202.861.1783

"Jon Forster is an expert in his field. His strengths start with his humility and charismatic personality, and the personal emphasis he places in his clients. Jon is immediately available to me and my family, and consistently offers sound, comprehensive and proactive options for consideration in the estate planning field."

— Chambers HNW 2021


For the past 30+ years, Jonathan Forster has served as an outlier in the private client space. BakerHostetler's Private Wealth Group, which he manages as the Northeast practice leader, has honed a unique legacy management experience that removes siloed, conflicted advice, incorporates family values and takes clients through an iterative, interactive and multi-disciplinary process using a fintech application (unique to BakerHostetler).

From his beginnings in the investment management, life insurance industries (an advisor at EF Hutton), along with an early interest in technology, Jonathan's personal experience harbors a very different vantage point, which was incorporated into BakerHostetler's culture, philosophy and business model, to serve successful families and their operating businesses, family offices (the original Convergent, today Pathstone), and the life insurance industry (where the firm serves as outside counsel to their trade association (Finseca formerly the AALU), life insurance distribution firms (NFP, portions of the M Group, and Crump) and insurance carriers (Guardian, TransAmerica and Ameritas). Having continued visibility into these various constituents affords the practice group the opportunity to deliver a service like no other law firm.


  • Successful families and business succession: The practice group provides a pragmatic, holistic and multi-generational approach. Clients typically receive a document-driven, episodic and transactional engagement with their law firm. BakerHostetler instead offers a proprietary four-step process to develop and manage family legacies, culminating in a family summit.
  • Family offices: Using BakerHostetler's technology backbone, the practice group provides much more than trust agreements and Wills. They offer consulting advice using benchmarking and active management (rather than a passive approach).
  • Life insurance and investment management industries: The practice group serves as an industry bellwether, offering predictions into the future and lobbying, legislative and case updates with what’s trending, field training and advice, case design and transferable business ideas. Their unique vantage point gives them an edge.

Recognitions and Memberships


  • Martindale-Hubbell: AV Preeminent
  • Chambers HNW: Private Wealth Law in Washington, D.C. (2017 to 2022)
  • Chambers HNW: Private Wealth Law in the Eastern Region (2006 to 2022)
  • Chambers HNW: Life Insurance Specialist in the USA (2018 to 2021)
  • BTI Power Rankings, Team Member: "The 16 Strongest Firms for Go-To Outside Counsel Insurance Work" (2016)
  • The Washingtonian "Top Money Advisors: Estate Attorneys" (2014)
  • SmartCEO, Legal Elite: Finalist (2009, 2013)


  • Association for Advanced Life Underwriting
    • Business Insurance and Estate Planning Committee: General Tax Counsel (2012 to Present)


  • American Heart Association (2010 to Present)
  • University of Maryland Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship
    • Volunteer (2012 to Present)
    • Advisory Board (2017)
  • MusiCares/Grammys (2009 to 2010)
  • Terrapin Club Board: Board Member (2008 to 2011)
  • University of Maryland Athletics Campaign Cabinet: Member (2006 to 2011)
  • Hebrew Home of Greater Washington: Board Member (2002 to 2003)

Featured Video

The Legacy Journey...Our Team Philosophy. What Makes Us Unique.
Play Video

Watch a short video describing our transformative journey through legacy management.


  • Virginia
  • Maryland
  • District of Columbia


  • J.D., George Mason University School of Law, 1989
  • B.S., Finance, University of Maryland, 1986