In all tax matters, Davis Malm's attorneys take the time to understand each client's unique needs and goals. We take an interdisciplinary approach, working closely with professionals in other practice areas in order to provide coordinated and comprehensive solutions.

Our clients include businesses of all sizes, from exchange-traded companies to early-stage entrepreneurs. We serve local Boston business as well as worldwide conglomerates with operations in Europe, Asia, and the Americas. Our clients span a range of industries, including high technology, financial services, real estate development, manufacturing, and professional services.

Our tax practice focuses on planning for tax-efficient business transactions and resolving controversies with taxing authorities.

We provide tax-efficient designs for a wide variety of commercial transactions. These include venture capital and other business financing, corporate mergers, business acquisitions and spin-offs, real estate development, intellectual property licensing, and other ventures. For new businesses, we help our clients select an appropriate jurisdiction and a business form designed to minimize taxes, and assist them in completing tax registrations and making tax elections. In business reorganizations, acquisitions, and spin-offs, we use both taxable and tax-free designs, taking into account such concerns as impacts on employee benefit plans, "golden parachutes," and deferred compensation. For maturing businesses, we are proud of our record in offering tax-efficient succession planning and exit strategies.

We strive to minimize our clients' tax burdens across all jurisdictions. At the state and local tax levels, we address apportionment and entity classification issues as well as sales tax and local property tax problems. We plan for international transactions and use business structures based in Europe, Asia, and offshore locations.

In addition to having general expertise in federal, state, and local taxation, our attorneys have developed specialized tax knowledge in several areas, including international taxation, municipal financing, and the taxation of the "unrelated" business activities of tax-exempt organizations. We have a well-developed practice in employee benefits and executive compensation.

We zealously represent our clients in controversies with the Internal Revenue Service and other tax authorities at all levels, from routine audits to complex litigation in the United States Tax Court. Where appropriate, we seek private rulings on important tax issues as applied to our clients' particular circumstances. We resolve problems with tax liens and levies. Finally, we provide opinions as to the tax consequences of particular investments and transactions, whether designed by us or by others.

In each case, our attorneys distill the complexities of the tax laws down to clear choices so that our clients can make the best decisions for themselves, their businesses, and their families.

Representative Matters

  • Provided tax counsel and prepared tax opinions regarding the impact of federal, state, and local taxes (including income, excise, sales, and real estate transfer taxes) for acquisitions of national companies in several jurisdictions.
  • Secured a $2 million reduction in corporate income tax by creating offshore captive insurance companies.
  • Secured cash payouts for a group of executives when their employer company was sold by successfully avoiding a significant golden parachute excise.
  • Advised a U.S. software firm opening a South American sales office and determined methods for reduction of taxes on repatriated profits.
  • Reduced sales and use tax obligations for business entities through reclassification and extrapolation.
  • Obtained a "public charity" designation for several nonprofit clients.
  • Assisted a private school in the "change of use" of its building, financed with tax-exempt bonds.
  • Assisted a nonprofit temple in expatriating funds for its foreign mission.
  • Helped a church maintain its tax-exempt status and property tax exemptions during the relocation of its main facility.
  • Assisted a religious association in the tax-free sale of its temple building.
  • Advised a nonprofit social club on how to receive a large donation for capital improvements to its clubhouse while avoiding any tax or loss of its tax-exempt status.
  • Developed a specialized partnership structure for real estate investments in order to maximize depreciation and allocate tax losses to the high-income partner.
  • Provided a tax opinion that a video production company's product was exempt from California state sales tax, providing a competitive advantage to the company.
  • Obtained a Massachusetts film production tax credit for a computer graphics company.