Nicholas C. Mowbray

Counsel

Washington, D.C.
T +1.202.861.1704
F +1.202.861.1783

Overview

Nicholas Mowbray focuses his practice on U.S. federal income tax matters, with an emphasis on international tax and the taxation of financial products. Nicholas regularly advises clients on ways to enhance the tax efficiency of commercial transactions and operating structures, including outbound investments by U.S. multinationals, inbound investments by non-U.S. multinationals, the structuring of cross-border financings, internal restructurings and reorganizations, and acquisitions. Nicholas also regularly advises his clients on controversy matters involving the recognition of income, transfer pricing and the international tax provisions of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. In addition, he has significant experience with advising clients on digital asset transactions, offerings and entity and investment structures.

Nicholas is the co-author of the leading treatise Financial Products: Taxation, Regulation and Design. Prior to joining the firm, he spent more than six years in public accounting, working in both Chicago and London.

Select Experience

International Tax Planning
  • Advised a U.S. aerospace company with respect to IP licensing and how to structure licensing agreements with a foreign licensee to achieve a foreign-derived intangible income deduction.
Transactional Tax Advice
  • Advised an investment fund on its disposals of deeply distressed debt instruments, including the proper tax accounting treatment and method.
Crypto and Blockchain Advice
  • Resolved an IRS controversy related to the trading of cryptocurrencies.
Tax Controversy
  • Represented a foreign-based manufacturing company in connection with IRS proposed transfer pricing adjustments with respect to certain intercompany debt.
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Experience

International Tax Planning
  • Advised a U.S. aerospace company with respect to IP licensing and how to structure licensing agreements with a foreign licensee to achieve a foreign-derived intangible income deduction.
  • Advised a foreign-based manufacturer on the disposal of its U.S. real property interests, including issues arising under the Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act.
  • Advised a digital platform company on its cross-border structure in connection with its launch of its U.S. platform, including addressing permanent establishment and U.S. trade or business considerations and transfer pricing issues.
  • Advised a U.S. multinational on how to structure a cross border oil and gas venture, including addressing U.S. trade or business and effectively connected income issues, U.S. agency principles, subpart F issues, and title passage.
  • Advised an investment fund on its move to Puerto Rico, establishing Puerto Rican residency, and navigating the applicable income sourcing rules
  • Created and implemented protocols for traders of a non-U.S. hedge fund with respect to publicly traded partnerships and derivatives written over U.S. equities.
  • Designed and implemented structures for a non-U.S. alternative lending fund with respect to lending and aircraft leasing in the United States.
  • Advised U.S. multinational on restructuring considerations with respect to GILTI.
  • Advised U.S. multinational on functions and services qualifying for FDII.
  • Designed and implemented the transfer of IP by a U.S. multinational to a foreign subsidiary.

Transactional Tax Advice

  • Advised an investment fund on its disposals of deeply distressed debt instruments, including the proper tax accounting treatment and method.
  • Created tax-efficient investment strategy for a non-U.S. investor investing in a U.S. broker-dealer.
  • Created restructuring and entity simplification plan for a U.S. multinational with respect to its non-U.S. holdings in China, Mexico and the Netherlands.
  • Advised U.S. multinational on how to integrate a non-U.S. acquired business into its operating model and how to restructure its acquisition indebtedness.
Crypto and Blockchain Advice
  • Resolved an IRS controversy related to the trading of cryptocurrencies.
  • Advised a U.S. based cryptocurrency trading firm on its relocation to Puerto Rico.
  • Advised a U.S. based high-frequency cryptocurrency trading firm on how to structure its operating model and trading operations.
  • Advised a U.S. business on matters related to creating and issuing non-fungible tokens as compensation to its employees.
Tax Controversy
  • Represented a foreign-based manufacturing company in connection with IRS proposed transfer pricing adjustments with respect to its intercompany debt.
  • Represented a U.S. multinational corporation in connection with an IRS controversy related to what constitutes a cash equivalent asset under Section 965.
  • Resolved an IRS controversy related to a U.S. multinational’s acquisition and stock issuance costs.
  • Resolved an IRS controversy related to proposed transfer pricing adjustments to a non-U.S. based multinationals intercompany debt with its U.S. subsidiary.
  • Advised and represented individuals filing for the IRS’s Voluntary Disclosure Program.

Recognitions and Memberships

Recognitions

  • The Legal 500 United States
    • Recommended in U.S. Taxes - Contentious 
  • Kids in Need of Defense (KIND): Pro Bono Attorney of the Month (Sept. 2020)
  • “Financial Products: Taxation, Regulation and Design” (Wolters Kluwer): Co-author

Memberships

  • American Bar Association: Tax Section

Pro Bono

  • Successfully represented a non-citizen child before USCIS and the Immigration Court, obtaining Special Immigrant Juvenile Status.

Admissions

  • U.S. Tax Court
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois
  • Illinois
  • District of Columbia

Education

  • LL.M., Taxation, Northwestern University School of Law, 2014, with honors
  • J.D., Chicago-Kent College of Law, Illinois Institute of Technology, 2010; Student Bar Association, Vice President
  • B.A., University of Michigan, 2006

Languages

  • Spanish

Blog

In The Blogs

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Blockchain Monitor
The IRS's ‘Operation Hidden Treasure': What it Means for Crypto Holders
By Nicholas C. Mowbray
April 18, 2022
In a recent article on Decrypt, Counsel Nicholas Mowbray discusses the IRS’s recently launched “Operation Hidden Treasure,” and how it could affect holders of cryptocurrency. Click here to read the original article on Decrypt.… Continue...
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Blockchain Monitor
Financial Firms Develop Crypto Offerings; DAO Hacker Reportedly Identified; DOJ Names New Crypto Director; NFT Initiatives Launch as Markets Are Hacked
By Lauren Bass, Teresa Goody Guillén, Nicholas C. Mowbray, Robert A. Musiala Jr.
February 25, 2022
In This Issue Financial Services Firms Make Moves Targeting Cryptocurrency Markets POC Seeks to Defend Quantum Attacks; DAO Hacker Reportedly Identified Music Company Partners with NFT Platform, Record Label Converts to NFT Label DOJ Names...
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Blockchain Monitor
New Crypto Products Launch; Market Reports Published; Treasury Dept. Addresses Crypto Tax; Crypto Enforcement Actions and Threats Continue
By Lauren Bass, Nicholas C. Mowbray, Keith R. Murphy, Robert A. Musiala Jr., Joanna F. Wasick
February 18, 2022
In This Issue: •Reports Address Crypto M&A and Metaverse, New Crypto Products Launch •Treasury Dept. Letter Addresses Crypto Tax; Reports Address Crypto Risks •US, UK and Canadian Law Enforcement Take Aim at Cryptographic Assets...
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Blockchain Monitor
CBDC Research Published, Crypto Products Launch, Report Addresses NFT Money Laundering Risks, UK Addresses DeFi Tax, DOJ Brings $4.5B Crypto Case
By Nicholas C. Mowbray, Robert A. Musiala Jr.
February 11, 2022
In This Issue: •CBDC Research Published, Fintech Firms and Banks Launch Crypto Initiatives •US Department of Treasury Guidance Notes NFT Money Laundering Risks •A Major US Banking Agency Prioritizes Crypto; Market Integrity in Focus; UK...
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Pillar and Post: Energy Law in the 21st Century
IRS Provides Initial and Limited Guidance on Newly Reinstated ‘Superfund Tax'
By Cory N. Barnes, Thomas E. Hogan, Nicholas C. Mowbray
January 20, 2022
Last month, the IRS published Notice 2021-66, issued in response to the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act’s (Jobs Act) reinstatement of the previously expired “Superfund Tax”—an excise tax imposed on manufacturers, producers, and...
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