Ayres, Shelton, Williams, Benson & Paine Lawyers who practice in the above area: John R. Williams, Stephen J. Paine and Jacob C. White

Complex Audits

The IRS may investigate such things as itemized tax deductions, low gross profit margins, large charitable deductions, tax-shelter losses, and complicated business and investment transactions. An audit may be expanded into additional years or related tax returns. It is important that the audit process be handled properly to prevent abuse of the taxpayer.

Our tax attorneys can assist you in minimizing your tax exposure, responding to IRS inquiries and at interviews. We can also be of assistance with an IRS field audit, an IRS “fishing expedition” into your business records and finances. When an IRS is resolved without litigation, we can draft the audit closing agreements to minimize your tax liability.

Family Business Succession

The right ownership structure and strategy can help your business pass smoothly from generation to generation. While the odds of successful family business succession goes down with each generation, we can help you beat those odds through succession planning. We help business owners understand and successfully resolve the issues that arise when a family firm enters into succession planning. Through family business succession planning, you give your family’s business the best chances for continued success under the next generation. You also provide for your retirement needs in a tax efficient manner. With foresight and planning, we help you to prepare the next generation to take over.

Federal and State Taxation

John Williams received a Masters of Law in the field of Taxation from Georgetown University School of Law. John is also Board Certified as a Tax Law Specialist by the Louisiana Board of Legal Specialization. John has served as the Chairman of the Tax Section of the Louisiana State Bar Association, the Louisiana Tax Law Advisory Committee of the Louisiana Board of Legal Specialization, and the Committee which administers the examination for Tax Law Specialization given to other practicing tax lawyers by the Louisiana State Bar Association. John is listed by SuperLawyers® as having attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement in the area of Taxation and Corporate Law. John has practiced in the area of Tax and Corporate Law for over twenty years handling matters involving mergers, acquisitions, reorganizations, dissolutions, divestitures and a variety of transactions. Jacob White received a Master of Laws in the field of Taxation from New York University School of Law. The firm is equipped to handle complex federal and state tax matters in Louisiana and Texas as its tax lawyers are licensed to practice in both of these jurisdictions.

Like-Kind Exchanges

A like-kind exchange is a United States tax deferred exchange that allows for the disposal of an asset and the acquisition of another similar asset without generating a tax liability from the sale of the first asset. A like-kind exchange can involve the exchange of one business for another business, or one real estate investment property for another real estate investment property.

We handle tax deferred like kind exchanges under section 1031 of the Internal Revenue Code. Our lawyers have extensive experience in such transactions, having represented parties to the exchange, qualified exchange intermediaries, and in serving as exchange intermediaries representative. We can assist you in meeting the requirements of the most current rules and regulations before proceeding with a like-kind exchange.

Preservation of Family Wealth

We offer advice and representation on all estate planning, administration, charitable giving, and elderly planning matters. We offer estate planning taking into account current and future estate tax laws. We prepare wills and trusts, spendthrift trusts, premarital agreements, post-marriage agreements, plans for transfers of estates, plans to provide for exceptional children and disabled individuals, powers of attorney, durable powers of attorney and living wills. Our tax attorneys provide advice on charitable techniques to reduce estate taxes including charitable remainder trusts, charitable lead trusts and establishment of a donor-advised fund, supporting organization or private foundation. The firm offers advice on annual gifting and use of lifetime gift tax exclusion to reduce overall estate taxes and establishment of family limited partnerships and limited liability companies to protect assets from creditor’s claims and leverage annual gift tax exclusion and lifetime exemption. We can help you with decisions about the benefits of irrevocable life insurance trusts, generation-skipping trusts and dynasty trusts for multi-generational planning. We represent parties to estate litigation and provide assistance to individual and corporate fiduciaries in estate and trust administration.

Tax Deficiency Matters

We represent businesses and individual with significant financial issues who dispute the findings of IRS audits. Our tax lawyers helps business clients achieve tax dispute resolution, providing representation in the form of administrative appeals and contesting notices of deficiency in federal tax court. We likewise represent parties in state law tax matters such as sales and use tax disputes, ad valorem tax protests and recovery of payments made under protests and invalidity and annulment of tax sales.