World Tax Reviews

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie’s tax department covers multi-jurisdictional tax planning, M&A transactions, tax controversy and transfer pricing. Partners Robert Albaral and Jonathan Martin are the key contacts in Texas. Albaral represents taxpayers at various stages of Federal and international state tax controversies, including audit, administrative appeals and judicial proceedings. Martin has an emphasis on international tax planning and M&A. 

During the research period the tax group advised clients on different inbound and outbound transactions.

Kirkland & Ellis

Kirkland & Ellis’s tax practice in Houston and Dallas is an integral part of the firm’s reputation in M&A. The department is focused on all the tax aspects of M&A and private equity transactions. In addition, its Houston practice group advises on tax planning in corporate matters with an emphasis on the energy industry.  

A standout deal led by the tax team, together with the corporate team, was the advising Rowan Companies on the tax aspects of its $12 billion combination with Ensco in an all-stock transaction. Another remarkable mandate was its representation of Newfield Exploration on its acquisition by Encana in an all-stock transaction valued at approximately $5.5 billion. 

In 2018, the tax group strengthened its capabilities with the addition of partner David Wheat, a former principal at KPMG. 

Mayer Brown

Mayer Brown’s Houston tax department has an impressive reputation in the tax controversy area. In addition, it is very strong in the transactional tax planning practice area. Shawn O’ Brien is the tax partner focused on tax controversy. His experience in controversy and litigation spans a broad range of areas, including transfer pricing. Partner Edward Osterberg represents the tax transactional and consulting areas in the Houston office, where his practice is very active in corporate and international transactions.  

During the research period, the tax department in Houston worked on notable controversy matters. In one standout case, the team represented US Oil, a division of US Venture, before the US District Court Eastern District of Wisconsin in relation to several fund claims. The case was very innovative and the tax department at the firm has been hired by six additional clients to solve the same issue. The total refund claims secured by the law firm add up to $4 billion. Other clients includ EOG Resources and Intermarine/Maritime Holdings. 

Client feedback 

“Excellent work product, easy to work with, keeps client well informed.” 

“Exceptional service driven by a combination of technical strength and creative strategic thinking.” 

Norton Rose Fulbright

Norton Rose Fulbright’s Houston tax group excels in tax controversy and litigation. Partner Robert Morris, based in Texas, is the co-head of the US tax department at the firm. The group represents clients in tax controversy matters, from planning for and managing IRS audits to litigating a wide variety of tax issues. In addition, it regularly advises clients on a range of transactions, with an emphasis on the energy sector. The transfer pricing practice area is also very active. 

During the research period, the tax group in Houston worked on numerous and complex matters in all stages of tax controversies. All matters remain confidential. 

Vinson & Elkins

Vinson & Elkins’s Texas tax group holds a dominant position in all tax aspects related to M&A transactions and controversy. With offices located in Houston and Dallas, it represents many private equity funds in fund formation and investments and it has a strong reputation on publicly-traded limited partnerships or limited liability partnerships. It is very active in an array of sectors, including oil and gas, real estate, aviation, shipping, financial services, healthcare and life sciences. 

During the research period, the team in Texas worked on notable matters. A standout deal was to advise RSP Permian on the tax aspects of its acquisition by Concho Resources. The size of the deal was $9.5 billion. Another interesting mandate saw the group representing Rice Energy on the tax aspects of its merger with the EQT Corporation, valued at about $6.7 billion. On the controversy side, the team advised SoCal SportsNet on a tax court dispute with the Internal Revenue Service. 

Weil Gotshal & Manges

Tax aspects on domestic and cross-border merger and acquisitions and financing transactions are the biggest strengths of the tax group at Weil Gotshal & Manges based in Houston and Dallas. In addition, it is very strong in the tax controversy space. Jonathan Macke leads the Dallas-based tax practice. 

During the research period, the group worked on several matters. One standout issue saw it advising Old Ironsides Energy on the tax aspects of its $1.75 billion sale of three Delaware Basin subsidiary companies. Another interesting mandate saw the group representing Tidewater on the tax aspects of its $1.25 billion combination with GulfMark Offshore. Other clients included Aethon Energy, Hayfin Capital Management and Easton Energy.