Kevin M. Johnson

Partner

Philadelphia
T +1.215.564.2728
F +1.215.568.3439

Overview

Kevin Johnson focuses his practice on tax controversy and litigation, as well as domestic and international tax planning. Early in his career, he joined the IRS as a revenue agent and also worked in the IRS Office of Appeals. As a result of this experience, he offers a unique perspective and an insider's understanding of IRS practice and procedure.

Select Experience

  • Represented a Fortune 100 manufacturer in a matter involving research credits, research and development expenses, foreign tax credits, and capitalization issues. Favorable resolution included changing a proposed tax deficiency in excess of $100 million to a net multimillion-dollar refund for the client.
  • Defended a commodities and option trading company in an IRS jeopardy levy enforcement proceeding, resulting in the IRS removing the levy and releasing all of the client's bank accounts and funds.
  • Represented an accounting firm in an E-file compliance audit. In addition to proposing substantial preparer penalties, the IRS proposed to suspend the accounting firm from the E-file program for one or more years due to compliance issues. A suspension from the E-filing program would have had a devastating impact on the accounting firm's tax return preparation business and its professional reputation. Negotiated a settlement that substantially reduced the penalties and convinced the IRS not to suspend the accounting firm from the E-file program. 
More »

Experience

  • Represented a Fortune 100 manufacturer in a matter involving research credits, research and development expenses, foreign tax credits, and capitalization issues. Favorable resolution included changing a proposed tax deficiency in excess of $100 million to a net multimillion-dollar refund for the client.
  • Defended a commodities and option trading company in an IRS jeopardy levy enforcement proceeding, resulting in the IRS removing the levy and releasing all of the client's bank accounts and funds.
  • Represented an accounting firm in an E-file compliance audit. In addition to proposing substantial preparer penalties, the IRS proposed to suspend the accounting firm from the E-file program for one or more years due to compliance issues. A suspension from the E-filing program would have had a devastating impact on the accounting firm's tax return preparation business and its professional reputation. Negotiated a settlement that substantially reduced the penalties and convinced the IRS not to suspend the accounting firm from the E-file program. 
  • Represented a Fortune 100 company on the restructuring of its foreign operations, including contract manufacturing operations.
  • Assisted in the successful negotiation of a settlement with the IRS Office of Appeals for a large energy company that reduced a $500 million proposed tax liability to less than $3 million. 
  • Member of the trial team in a case where the taxpayer obtained a Seventh Circuit decision affirming summary judgment in favor of their claim that participation in a Mexican debt-equity swap did not produce short-term capital gain. 
  • Trial team member in a case where a taxpayer obtained full IRS concession in a tax court case involving the question of whether the taxpayer could accrue and deduct costs for cooperative advertising with its retailers before claims were submitted and payments were made. 

Recognitions and Memberships

Recognitions

  • Chambers USA: Tax in Pennsylvania (2016, 2017)
  • Pennsylvania "Super Lawyer" (2014 to 2017)
  • Martindale-Hubbell: AV Preeminent
  • Tax Controversy Leaders Guide: Leading Practitioner in the U.S. (2017)

Memberships

  • American College of Tax Counsel: Fellow
  • American Bar Foundation: Fellow
  • American Bar Association
    • Tax Section, Administrative Practice Committee Member: Past Chair
    • Tax Court Committee: Member
  • Philadelphia Bar Association
    • Tax Section, Tax Council: Member

Pro Bono

  • Represents low-income tax-payers before the IRS through the IRS VITA program. 

Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Tax Court
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Pennsylvania
  • Pennsylvania
  • District of Columbia

Education

  • LL.M., Taxation, New York University School of Law, 2000
  • J.D., Columbia Law School, 1995, Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar
  • M.S., Taxation, Temple University, 1991
  • B.B.A., Temple University, 1985