Practice area

World Tax Reviews

Kirkland & Ellis

One of the most prominent firms in the M&A practice area, Kirkland’s tax group in Chicago maintains a strong reputation in tax planning in connection with domestic and foreign mergers, acquisitions, buyouts, fund formations, restructuring and reorganisations. In addition, the group advises US and foreign clients regarding their US real estate investments and represents companies or their creditors in planning tax aspects of restructuring. The group in Chicago is also very active in every stage of the tax controversy process.

Over the research period, the tax group worked on different matters. A standout deal was to represent Audax Private Equity in tax aspects on various matters. Another notable mandate was to advise Bain Capital Private Equity on the tax aspects of various matters. Other clients include Energy Future Holdings, Landmark Partners and Madison Dearborn Partners.  

Mayer Brown

Partner James Barry, based in Chicago, is one of the firm’s practice leaders in the tax transactions group at Mayer Brown. Partners Joel Williamson and Thomas Kittle-Kamp are the co-leaders of the tax controversy and transfer pricing practice. The group in Chicago excels in tax controversy and is also very strong in the transactional tax space. In particular, the tax group advises US corporations and individuals in tax planning for foreign and domestic operations. 

During the research period, the tax group worked on impressive tax matters. In a standout deal, the team represented Nestlé on its $71.15 billion agreement for a perpetual licence with Starbucks. The transaction involved complex tax aspects. In the tax controversy space, the team represented FMR (Fidelity) in a notable case. Other key clients included The Hartford Financial Services Group and Hyatt Hotel. Other transactions and cases remain confidential. 

McDermott Will & Emery

McDermott Will & Emery’s tax practice is among the top players in Illinois. The firm has one of the most diversified state and local tax practices in the US, particularly in the tax controversy space. Key contacts in the Chicago office are partners Jane Wells May, Catherine Battin and Andrew Roberson. The group regularly represents clients in state and local tax controversies at the audit, administrative and judicial levels in numerous jurisdictions. 

During the research period, the tax group represented the Illinois-based agricultural cooperative Growmark on two pending cases in the US Tax Courts, challenging IRS determinations that it owes millions in taxes. Another interesting mandate saw the tax group led by Jane May handling numerous multi-state tax issues for Monsanto, the St Louis-based multinational agrochemical and agricultural biotechnology corporation.  

Morgan Lewis & Bockius

A leading firm in the controversy practice, the tax group at Morgan Lewis & Bockius also excels in the transfer pricing practice area. Partner Thomas Linguanti leads the Chicago-based tax practice. The group regularly represents clients in complex tax controversies and litigation before the US Tax Court, federal district and bankruptcy courts. In addition, the group is very active in international tax planning and representation in cross-border M&A. 

During the research period, the tax group worked on remarkable tax controversy cases. All names remain confidential. In the corporate tax space, the group advised Sofa Digital Media and Puffy. The matters are still ongoing. Other clients are confidential. 

In terms of lateral moves, the tax group grew significantly. The team in Chicago strengthened itself with the addition of partners Adam Beckerink, Michael Liu, Matthew Mock and Joshua Richardson, all from Baker McKenzie. 

Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom

Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom’s Chicago tax practice is among the top players in Illinois. David Polster oversees the group that excels in corporate and transactional tax. The firm offers a variety of services in tax planning, international and corporate tax in an array of sectors.  

Over the research period, the group worked on an impressive number of tax matters. A standout deal was the representation of the Australia-based Westfield Corporation on its acquisition by Unibail-Rodamco of France. The transaction had an enterprise value for Westfield of $24.7 billion. The transactions were related to different tax matters. Another interesting mandate was to advise the Potlatch Corporation on the tax aspects of its $1.2 billion acquisition of Deltic Timber. Other clients included QIC and Enlivant.

In terms of lateral moves, the tax group saw the departure of counsel Matt Hofheimer, who moved to EY.