Taxation

Legal Services

Taxation

Tax issues underlie virtually every important business decision. From corporate entity formation, to procurement, to corporate transactions, federal, state, and local tax issues implicate business strategy at every level of an organization. At Kerr Russell, we provide well-grounded and creative tax solutions that meet the challenges our clients face in all aspects of their businesses.

Kerr Russell has deep and varied experience  in the laws of taxation at the federal, state and local levels. Many of our attorneys are Certified Public Accountants, and/or hold Master of Law degrees in taxation (LL.M.). Our reputation for providing smart, practical tax solutions stems from the advanced education and knowledge of our tax professionals, and our ability  to anticipate, evaluate and identify potential tax liabilities, as well as opportunities, that affect our clients’ bottom-line.

We assist a diverse range of clients, from service providers to capital-oriented businesses. The hallmark of our taxation practice is efficient planning that aligns with our clients’ business and personal goals, while maintaining compliance with all applicable rules and regulations. Our attorneys help minimize  corporate taxes and penalties through negotiation or litigation where necessary; reduce estate taxes through thoughtful plan design; and handle all aspects of business and personal tax issues.

Our services include:

  • Planning and structuring mergers, acquisitions, reorganizations and liquidations
  • Tax dispute negotiation and litigation (both civil and criminal) with the IRS and state and local governmental units
  • Planning and structuring of joint ventures and development projects
  • Corporate, partnership, limited liability company and personal tax planning
  • Executive compensation and employee incentive planning
  • Personal estate planning
  • Exempt status qualification and maintenance
  • Tax abatements
  • Tax-exempt industrial revenue bond financing
  • Structured settlement analysis
  • Reporting, returns and compliance
  • International tax issues
+Practicing Attorneys & Staff

Attorneys

Jason W. Bank
Jason W. Bank

Member

Jeffrey A. Brantley
Jeffrey A. Brantley

Member

Richard C. Buslepp
Richard C. Buslepp

Member

David J. Den Dooven
David J. Den Dooven

Member

John D. Gatti
John D. Gatti

Member

Michael D. Gibson
Michael D. Gibson

Member

Kenneth R. Lombardo
Kenneth R. Lombardo

Member

Mark J. Stasa
Mark J. Stasa

Member

George J. Christopoulos
George J. Christopoulos

Of Counsel

Robert E. Forrest
Robert E. Forrest

Of Counsel

Liam K. Healy
Liam K. Healy

Of Counsel

Cody Attisha
Cody Attisha

Associate

Caleb D. Erbert
Caleb D. Erbert

Associate

+Related Insights

August 13, 2020

President Trump Issues Presidential Memorandum Authorizing Payroll Tax Deferral

On August 8, 2020 President Trump issued a Presidential Memorandum on deferring payroll tax.

August 6, 2020

FAQs on PPP Loan Forgiveness: Key Takeaways

On August 4, 2020, the Small Business Administration, in consultation with the Department of Treasury, released “Frequently Asked Questions (“FAQs”) on PPP Loan Forgiveness.”

July 30, 2020

401(k) Plans have until August 31 to Avoid Required Employer Contributions

Many 401(k) plans are “safe-harbor” plans, meaning that the plan sponsor employer commits to providing an annual match or 3% contribution for participants in exchange for avoiding annual non-discrimination testing and possible burdensome corrections.

June 1, 2020

House and Senate Pass H.R. 7010 Which Would Provide More Flexibility to PPP Borrowers

On Thursday May 28, 2020, the House passed H.R. 7010 which would provide more flexibility to borrowers under the Paycheck Protection Loan Program. On Wednesday June 3, 2020, the bill also passed in the Senate and is now making its way to President Trump’s desk for signature. 

May 18, 2020

SBA Releases Loan Forgiveness Application and Instructions

On Friday, May 15, 2020, the SBA released the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loan Forgiveness Application (the “Application”) and related instructions providing much needed guidance on several open issues. 

May 14, 2020

SBA Announces Safe Harbor Presumption for PPP Loans Under $2 million

Since the inception of the PPP loan program, all applicants have been required to certify in good faith that “[c]urrent economic uncertainty makes this loan request necessary to support the ongoing operations of the Applicant.”

May 5, 2020

IRS Announces No Deduction Allowed for Expenses Resulting in PPP Loan Forgiveness

On Thursday April 30, 2020, the IRS released Notice 2020-32, clarifying that no tax deduction is allowed for the payment of expenses resulting in loan forgiveness under the SBA Paycheck Protection Loan Program.

April 24, 2020

House Approves Replenishment of Paycheck Protection Program Loan Funding

On Thursday April 23, 2020, the House passed H.R. 266, a $484 billion relief package that would replenish funds for the SBA Paycheck Protection Program.

April 17, 2020

Small Businesses Administration Stops Accepting PPP Loan Applications

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act”) offered $349 billion in funds to small businesses affected by COVID-19 and the economic slowdown through its Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”).

March 30, 2020

CARES Act Establishes SBA Paycheck Protection Program

On March 27, 2020, President Trump signed into law, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act”) expanding the SBA 7(a) loan program (the “Paycheck Protection Program”) by allowing eligible businesses to receive forgivable loans of up to $10,000,000 for a maximum term of 2 years.

March 30, 2020

CARES Act: Summary of Key Business Tax Provisions

On March 27, 2020, President Trump signed into law, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act”).  A summary of key business tax provisions follows.

March 30, 2020

CARES Act Relief for Individual Taxpayers

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act”) was signed into law on March 27, 2020. The CARES Act provides critically needed stimulus and relief to businesses and individuals in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak.

March 30, 2020

Executive Order 2020-26 Extends Michigan Tax Deadline

On March 27, 2020, Governor Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-26 extending the filing and payment deadline for 2019 State of Michigan income taxes. The order contains additional relief.

March 20, 2020

IRS ExtendsTax Filing Deadline

In an effort to offer COVID-19 relief, the IRS is providing an extension to the tax filing deadline. The new deadline is July 15, 2020. This is in addition to the extension to file and pay 2019 and estimated taxes.

March 2, 2020

What Do Employers Need to Know About the SECURE Act?

Kerr Russell attorney Liam K. Healy answers this question for DBusiness Magazine.

January 16, 2020

Employers Sponsoring 401(k) Plans Must be Diligent with Plan Documents

Labor and Employment attorney Liam Healy summarizes recent changes from the IRS. On December 13, 2019, the IRS Office of Chief Counsel issued a General Legal Advice Memorandum (“Memo”) stating the IRS’ position that employers sponsoring 401(k) plans must sign and keep plan documents or risk disqualification.

January 16, 2020

IRS Allows Employer Debt as Tax-Deductible Pension Plan Contribution

Attorney Liam Healy summarizes IRS rulings from late 2019. In a private letter ruling issued November 8, 2019, the IRS has allowed a company ("Employer") that is the sponsor of a defined benefit pension plan to contribute an employer promissory note as a tax-deductible contribution to the plan.

January 15, 2020

The SECURE Act is effective January 1, 2020

Attorney Liam Healy explains the details  of the “Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act of 2019” (SECURE Act). The SECURE Act was signed into law on December 20, 2019 and went into effect January 1, 2020. The Act makes significant changes to the rules relating to 401(k) plans and IRAs. 

June 12, 2019

Kerr Russell Tax Attorney Discusses The New Federal Tax Law

Attorney John D. Gatti discusses the impact the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) is having on businesses.  The full article, "The Buck Stops Here," in Corp! Magazine can be found HERE.

August 7, 2018

Cody Attisha contributes "Choice-of-Entity in a New Business Landscape" to Corp! Magazine's July/August 2018 issue

Kerr Russell associate Cody Attisha (taxation) contributes the article "Choice-of-Entity in a New Business Landscape" to Corp! Magazine's July/August 2018 issue. Member John Gatti (taxation) collaborated with Cody on the piece.

March 16, 2018

IRS Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program Coming to an End

On March 13, 2018, the IRS announced that it is ending the 2014 Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP) on September 28, 2018.

February 22, 2018

Katherine Cser contributes "Proposed Tip-Pooling Regulation: Impact on Restaurateurs” to American Bar Association Section of Litigation, Employment and Labor Relations Law

Katherine Cser, associate (labor and employment), contributed the article “Proposed Tip-Pooling Regulation: Impact on Restaurateurs” to the American Bar Association Section of Litigation, Employment and Labor Relations Law.

January 26, 2018

Download Kerr Russell's updated firm brochure and overview of services

Kerr Russell is proud of Detroit. We are proud to have had a seat at the table here since 1874. Our exceptional attorneys understand the unique challenges facing business leaders. Our legal solutions are prompt, accurate, economical, and focused around your needs in every area. We know Michigan business like the back of our hands.

January 15, 2018

Honoring the legacy of Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr.

On Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and every day, we at Kerr Russell honor Reverend King’s leadership and his legacy as well as the critical importance of diversity and opportunity in this great land of ours. Strength comes from difference; a multiplicity of voices brings positive change; understanding and inclusion inspire creativity and innovation.

January 11, 2016

Robert E. Forrest authors "New Internal Revenue Code Provision Permits Revocation or Denial of Passport for Certain Taxpayers with Tax Debts"

On December 4, 2015, President Obama signed into law Public Law 114-94, The FAST Act f/k/a HR 22 – Surface Transportation Reauthorization Reform Act of 2015. As part of its many provisions, new Section 7345 of the Internal Revenue Code was enacted.

April 11, 2013

Robert E. Forrest authors "Avoidance of Tax Malpractice"

Whether one is a general practitioner or seeking to specialize in tax practice, it is well to consider the perils and avoidance of tax malpractice.
+Related News

July 14, 2020

15 Lawyers From Kerr Russell Recognized as Leading Lawyers 2020

A total of 15 lawyers from Kerr Russell are named to the 2020 list of Leading Lawyers in Michigan. Only those lawyers who are most often recommended qualify for this honor.

May 7, 2020

How Associates Can Make the Most of Working from Home

Kerr Russell associate, Cody Attisha, participated in a panel discussion sponsored by the State Bar of Michigan Taxation Section. The webinar was on COVID-19 & How Associates Can Make the Most of Working from Home. 

April 17, 2020

Kerr Russell Presents Webinars on COVID-19 Legal Topics for Physicians and Medical Practices

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has created a public health emergency resulting in the enactment of several laws, Executive Orders, notices and guidance at the federal, state and local levels.

March 17, 2020

Coronavirus/COVID-19 Business Continuity:  A Message to Our Community, Clients and Friends

Kerr Russell is committed to its community, clients and people. As the world navigates through the impact of COVID-19 (coronavirus), we want to assure you that Kerr Russell is committed to supporting our community, clients and people as effectively as we have through every other crisis our Nation has encountered over our firm’s nearly 150-year history. Our firm is fully operational: We have made sure that our lawyers and staff are able to safely and effectively serve our clients’ needs and continue operations on an uninterrupted basis. Most of our people

November 15, 2019

19 Kerr Russell Attorneys Recognized as DBusiness Top Lawyers for 2020

A total of 19 lawyers from Kerr Russell are named as dBusiness Magazine 2020 Top Lawyers. The attorneys are selected through a peer review process.  dBusiness polled 19,000 attorneys across Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, Washtenaw, and Livingston Counties.

November 4, 2019

Kerr Russell Ranked as U.S. News “Best Law Firm”2020

Kerr Russell is once again ranked as a "Best Law Firm" by U.S. News and Best Lawyers.  Firms included on the list are recognized for professional excellence with consistently impressive ratings from clients and peers.

October 30, 2019

Kerr Russell Attorneys Discuss Legal Issues for Nonprofits at MICPA Event

On October 28, 2019, employment and labor attorney Mark Knoth and tax attorney John Gatti participated in a panel for the Michigan Association of CPAs (MICPA).

August 22, 2019

Liam Healy Presents on Resolving the Tax and Health Insurance Conundrum for Small Business

Employee benefits attorney, Liam Healy, presented to the Michigan Association of CPAs, on tax and health insurance matters for small businesses.

August 15, 2019

15 Lawyers From Kerr Russell Are Recognized In The Best Lawyers In America© 2020

A total of 15 lawyers from Kerr Russell are named to the prestigious 2020 Edition of the Best Lawyers in America©. The award is given annually in recognition of being named as part of the “top legal talent in the U.S.”

August 14, 2019

Kerr Russell Featured as "Faces of Corporate Law 2019" by DBusiness

Kerr Russell is honored to once again serve as DBusiness Magazine's "Faces of Corporate Law." Attorneys pictured: Anna Valk (real estate), John Gatti (corporate/taxation), and Katie Westfall (health care).

August 5, 2019

Kerr Russell Attorneys Present at MICPA

John D. Gatti and Cody Attisha presented on tax implications of exit strategies for corporations, partnerships and LLCs.

September 23, 2018

Kerr Russell sponsors, John and Kathleen Gatti attend Guidance Center 60th anniversary gala

Kerr Russell member John Gatti and his wife Kathleen Gatti helped celebrate The Guidance Center’s 60th anniversary last night at the organization’s gala, sponsored in part by Kerr Russell. John is on the Guidance Center board. He commented, “What a great event to celebrate The Guidance Center’s achievement.”

September 20, 2018

Kerr Russell recognizes our 2018 dbusiness Top Lawyers in Metro Detroit honorees

Kerr Russell recognizes this year’s dbusiness Top Lawyers in Metro Detroit honorees - 21 attorneys, many for multiple practice areas.

September 12, 2018

Kerr Russell's John Gatti named to Leadership Detroit, Class XV

Kerr Russell member John Gatti has been named to Class XV of the Detroit Regional Chamber's Leadership Detroit program. Leadership Detroit Class XV showcases 70 leaders across Southeast Michigan representing a cross-section of the community, including business, organized labor, government, education, media, civic groups, health services and community organizations.

June 9, 2018

The Guidance Center's 2018 Summer Glow a breezy success; Kerr Russell sponsors, attends

Guidance Center board member and Kerr Russell partner John Gatti attended the 2018 Summer Glow on June 8 along with his wife Kathleen Gatti and Kerr Russell Director of Marketing Roy Sexton.

March 29, 2018

Detroit Public Television's PBSNewsHour and Nightly Business Report to be sponsored by Kerr Russell

Kerr Russell is pleased to support Detroit Public Television, and, beginning April 2, the following spot will air during PBS NewsHour (weekdays, 6-7 pm) and the Nightly Business Report (weekdays, 7-7:30 pm). View the spot here.

February 26, 2018

Kerr Russell's latest ad "Driven By Results" debuts in Crain's M&A, Biggest Deals issue this week

Kerr Russell's latest ad "Driven By Results" debuts in Crain's M&A, Biggest Deals issue this week. The ad emphasizes the firm's 143-year presence in Detroit as part of the larger business and legal community. "We understand the region. We know what moves Michigan. We are committed to the community."

February 19, 2018

Creating Leadership Opportunities for Young People

Mark Stasa, Kerr Russell member (estate and trusts planning and business), has been an integral contributor to the firm for over 30 years, and he is also an active community leader and musician. He has served on the Board of Directors and is currently a legal advisor to Drum Corps International (DCI). DCI is a non-profit governing entity for the junior (under age 22) drum and bugle corps in the United States and Canada. DCI is composed of member corps who earned membership through competition.

January 15, 2018

Influencing the Legal Landscape - new Kerr Russell ad to appear in dbusiness

Kerr Russell introduces the third ad in the new "Est. in Detroit 1874" series: "Influencing the legal landscape." The piece emphasizes the firm's 143-year presence in Detroit as part of the larger business and legal community. "We don't sit on the sidelines. We are active in industry groups and we're driving legislative change. We are leaders in the law."

January 8, 2018

Kerr Russell supports Italian American Chamber of Commerce of Michigan

Thank you, Italian American Chamber of Commerce of Michigan, for inspiring pride throughout the Italian community and for establishing a relationship of trust and service between your members and our fellow citizens since 1919. [The ad above, designed by Nikki Horn, will appear in the IACC Grapevine newsletter throughout 2018.]

January 3, 2018

Kerr Russell highlighted in Best Lawyers - Business, Winter 2017 issue

Look for Kerr Russell attorneys and advertising (pages 92-95) in the Best Lawyers - Business, Winter 2017 issue. Earlier in 2017, a number of Kerr Russell's attorneys and practice areas were honored with U.S. News and World Report Best Lawyers recognition.

December 18, 2017

Kerr Russell team makes holiday donations to Capuchin Soup Kitchen, Wigs 4 Kids, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Ann Arbor, and Children's Hospital of Michigan

One of our traditions here at Kerr Russell is to hold a holiday raffle to benefit three local charities as well as to conduct a toy drive for local children. This year's raffle (many of the beautiful and festive prizes picture here) raised a record total of $3,450 which will be divided equally among three organizations: Capuchin Soup Kitchen, Wigs 4 Kids of Michigan, Inc., and Ronald McDonald House Charities of Ann Arbor.

December 12, 2017

Detroit Legal News coverage of recent additions to Kerr Russell family

Thanks to the Detroit Legal News for this exceptional coverage of the new additions to our Kerr Russell legal team: associates Cody Attisha, Derek Boyd, Andrew Eurich, and Stephen Reaume as well as paralegal Paul Burkett, legal assistant Jill Clinard and administrative staff Heather Kalfayan.

December 5, 2017

Kerr Russell attorneys attend dbusiness Breakfast Series, featuring David Littmann

Kerr Russell sponsored the December 5 DBusiness Magazine Breakfast Series at the Gem/Century Theatres, which featured an economic forecast from Comerica Bank's David Littmann.

December 1, 2017

Kerr Russell welcomes new associate Cody Attisha - taxation law, corporate law, and mergers and acquisitions

Kerr Russell is pleased to welcome new associate Cody Attishato the team. Cody's practice will focus on taxation law, corporate law, and mergers and acquisitions.  Prior to joining Kerr Russell, Cody served as a tax associate with an international “Big 4” accounting firm where he advised on various aspects of federal, state and local taxation. Cody assisted with tax advisory relating to corporate restructurings and mergers and acquisitions.

November 30, 2017

Merry and bright ... Kerr Russell welcomes the holiday season

It's a time to celebrate, reflect and remember. However you mark the holidays, we hope your days are filled with warmth and thankfulness, good times, and endless cheer. As another year draws to a close, we at Kerr Russell are grateful to you. You give purpose to our work and add meaning to our relationships. Your trust is a cherished gift. Enjoy these images as we get our offices ready to celebrate the holiday season. Design by Mandy Lark of Lark Interior Design.

November 30, 2017

Kerr Russell, Boulevard Investment lunch and learn

Kerr Russell hosted Royal Oak's Boulevard Investment Banking at our Detroit office for a lunch-and-learn event on Thursday, November 30. From Boulevard's website: "Boulevard is a boutique, investment banking and private investment firm focused on working with owners, operators, and businesses active in the middle market.

November 16, 2017

Culture of Connection - new Kerr Russell ad to appear in Michigan Lawyers Weekly and dbusiness

Kerr Russell introduces the second ad in the new "Est. in Detroit 1874" series: "A culture of connection." The piece emphasizes the firm's 143-year presence in Detroit as part of the larger business and legal community. "We are relationship focused. We know our people and our clients are the lifeblood of our firm."

November 3, 2017

Kerr Russell launches new advertising in upcoming issues of dbusiness and Crain's Detroit

With this month's issue of dbusiness, focused on Top Lawyers in Metro Detroit, Kerr Russell launches its new brand advertising with "A Track Record of Results." Working with Identity Public Relations and Marketing, Kerr Russell's marketing team developed the creative to emphasize the firm's longstanding place in Detroit's legal and business history.

November 3, 2017

Kerr Russell recognizes this year’s dbusiness Top Lawyers in Metro Detroit honorees

Kerr Russell recognizes this year’s dbusiness Top Lawyers in Metro Detroit honorees:

November 1, 2017

Kerr Russell ranked in the 2018 U.S. News - Best Lawyers® "Best Law Firms" list nationally in 1 practice area and regionally in 17 practice areas

U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers, for the eighth consecutive year, announce the "Best Law Firms" rankings.

October 30, 2017

Kerr Russell sponsors, members attend 36th Detroit International Wine Auction to support College for Creative Studies

Kerr Russell was pleased to support the 36th Detroit International Wine Auction held on October 21, celebrating the College for Creative Studies and supporting Michigan's ever-growing arts community. Kerr Russell was a Benefactor Sponsor, and here is a photo of member Jeff Brantley and his significant other enjoying the event. More photos here.

October 23, 2017

John Gatti named Vice Chair of the Program Curriculum Task Force for MICPA

John D. Gatti (member) was just named Vice Chair of the Program Curriculum Task Force for the Michigan Association of CPAs (MICPA). MICPA President and CEO Peggy A. Dzierzawski, CAE, in her announcement wrote, "Congratulations on your new role as Vice Chair of the Program Curriculum Task Force.

October 12, 2017

John Gatti presents at State Bar of Michigan's "Fundamentals of Taxation"

On October 12, John Gatti, member, presented "Types of Taxes & Basics of Income Taxation" as part of the State Bar of Michigan - Taxation Section's "Fundamentals of Taxation" program.