Michael Jacobs Joins Former Colleagues at Reed Smith – Firm Now Boasts Largest State Tax Controversy Practice in the U.S.

 In Reed Smith, Tax Controversy, Tax Partner, Tax Partner Moves

Reed Smith LLP, one of the 15 largest law firms in the world, has reached another growth milestone, it now has the largest state tax controversy practice in the nation. Today the firm added another partner in Philadelphia to the group which just recently moved from Dechert. Michael Jacobs joins the firm’s Regulatory Litigation Practice where he will continue his work in the area of state tax controversy matters.

Mr. Jacobs was formerly a member of the state and local tax group in the Philadelphia office of Dechert. He joins his former Dechert colleagues Lee Zoeller, Kyle Sollie, David Kraus and Frank Gallo who moved to Reed Smith’s Philadelphia office as partners in the tax controversy practice in late February. This group provides east coast capability for the Tax Controversy Group which was launched several years ago with Jim Kleier, Brian Toman and John Messenger who work from Reed Smith’s San Francisco office.

“Mike’s election as our newest partner completes the transition of the entire Dechert state tax controversy practice and rounds out Reed Smith’s state tax controversy team,” said Eugene Tillman, Reed Smith’s Director of Legal Personnel. “We now offer our clients the highest quality, coast-to-coast, one-stop state tax controversy shop available for Fortune 500 companies.”

The addition of these state tax lawyers brings the Reed Smith Tax Group to 20 professionals practicing exclusively in state and local tax matters of national significance.

In addition to state tax controversy matters, Mike’s practice emphasizes state tax planning in connection with business transactions, including advising public and private companies with respect to tax-free reorganizations and taxable acquisitions. He also counsels clients on the tax treatment of restricted stock, stock options and the application of golden parachute rules.

“I am delighted rejoin my former Dechert colleagues and contribute to the creation of the nation’s premiere state tax controversy practice,” said Mr. Jacobs. “I look forward to continuing my work on a variety of matters for our clients who transitioned with us to Reed Smith, as well as to adding my tax expertise to other aspects of Reed Smith’s transactional practice.”

A 1989 graduate of Yale University and a 1992 graduate of Harvard Law School, Mr. Jacobs is a member of the Tax Section of the American Bar Association and a former chair of the Boston Bar Association Federal Tax and Business Transactions Committee.

In addition to the five new partners, Reed Smith’s state tax controversy practice also includes the following former Dechert associates:

Randy L. Varner, a 1998 graduate of Dickinson School of Law at Pennsylvania State University;

Jennafer M. Norley, a 2004 graduate of Villanova University Law School;

Sara A. Lima, a 2002 graduate of Temple University Beasley School of Law;

Kenneth R. Levine, a 2006 graduate of Temple University Beasley School of Law;

David J. Gutowski, a 2000 graduate of Temple University Beasley School of Law;

Monique A. Ellenbogen, a 2001 J.D. graduate of the University of Pennsylvania School of Law and a 2005 LL.M. graduate of New York University School of Law;

Eric M. Coyne; a 2003 graduate of Dickinson School of Law at Pennsylvania State University; and

Stephen J. Blazik, a 1998 J.D. graduate of Temple University Beasley School of Law and a 2003 LL.M. graduate of Villanova University Law School.

Two former Dechert paralegals and five staff members made the transition to Reed Smith with the 13 lawyers.

“With the addition of the former Dechert team, this office has further enhanced its litigation capabilities as well as our abilities to advise on state and local tax strategies in structuring transactions,” said Claudia Springer, Philadelphia Office Managing Partner. “We are exceptionally well positioned to pursue a wide range of matters across all business, industry and governmental sectors, whether involving a state tax controversy, product liability defense, insurance or asbestos claims, technology disputes, financial services class actions, or complex health care and pharmaceutical matters.

About Reed Smith

Reed Smith is one of the 15 largest law firms in the world, with more than 1,500 lawyers in 21 offices throughout the United States, Europe and the Middle East. Founded in 1877, the firm represents leading international businesses from Fortune 100 corporations to mid-market and emerging enterprises. Its attorneys provide litigation services in multi-jurisdictional matters and other high stake disputes, deliver regulatory counsel, and execute the full range of strategic domestic and cross-border transactions. Reed Smith is a preeminent advisor to industries including financial services, life sciences, health care, advertising and media, shipping, international trade and commodities, real estate, manufacturing and education. For more information, visit reedsmith.com.

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