Private Wealth Planning

From creation to administration, our attorneys work with clients to design tax-efficient wealth management solutions that encourage productive and creative succession planning tailored to meet their needs.

Our attorneys are prepared to incorporate a range of solutions that meet the complex needs and demands of our clients, including the following.

Wealth Planning and Preservation

We have decades of experience helping clients strategize and implement wealth preservation plans, including generation-skipping trusts (or dynasty trusts), grantor retained annuity trusts, children's or grandchildren's trusts, and qualified personal residence trusts. We are also highly experienced at advising on recapitalizing closely held corporations, using non-voting common stock, family limited partnership/limited liability companies, and buy/sell agreements, as well as charitable-remainder trusts, wealth replacement life insurance trusts, charitable lead trusts, and intrafamily sales and loans.

Estate Administration and Probate

Administering the estate of a loved one can be an overwhelming task fraught with details and deadlines. We assist with all aspects of estate and trust administration to ease that burden. Our services include, but are not limited to, guiding fiduciaries through the probate process, managing estate tax returns, advising on the execution of a will or trust, and assisting with the resolution of beneficiary disputes, both judicially and nonjudicially.

Trusts and Estates Litigation

Despite one's best efforts, an estate plan may become subject to a variety of challenges or potential issues. Our experienced litigation attorneys represent trustees, executors, heirs, and beneficiaries in complex disputes involving the administration of high-net-worth estates. We pursue and defend against all forms of probate-affiliated petitions, including breach of fiduciary duty, recovering assets, and addressing alleged estate and beneficiary related damages.

Business Organizations, Operating Businesses, and Succession Planning

Through each stage of a company's life cycle, Venable attorneys guide clients through issues related to the structuring, formation, and strategic exiting of their business entities. Our attorneys work with clients to plan for the longevity of family-owned companies and help implement generational transition plans, including succession planning. We take into consideration the impact of state and federal income, gift, estate, and generation-skipping transfer taxes to ensure that succession plans are aligned with clients' personal and business goals.

Nonprofit and Charitable Advisory Services

With one of the largest nonprofit practices in the nation, we are well equipped to help donors and founders build charitable organizations from the ground up. We represent a range of tax-exempt organizations, not just 501(c)(3) charities, and as a full-service firm we offer clients wraparound counsel to support their philanthropic goals. Our attorneys counsel donors on the tax implications of gifts and gifting structures and advise trustees and boards of directors on ongoing compliance and governance for public charities and private foundations.

International Estate Planning

Venable attorneys are experienced in protecting assets while minimizing taxation of foreign nationals and American citizens in the United States and abroad. Backed by a wealth of tax and regulatory professionals, we help clients evaluate competing tax regimes and tax treaties as part of cross-border estate and tax planning, including pre-immigration and expatriation. Our attorneys design and implement tax-efficient asset transfers to family members and trusts, including business reorganizations, taking into consideration the nationality and residency of parties and the locations in which assets are held. We also provide cross-border charitable planning.

Residency Planning (Domestic and International)

A person's tax liability is largely tied to where they live. Venable attorneys are skilled advisors on residency and domicile planning, with a thorough understanding of relevant requirements and tax laws in jurisdictions across the United States and abroad, and deep insight into state audits. With an emphasis on tax efficiency and asset protection, we offer clients sound, practical advice in choosing their home base.

Entertainment Industry Assets

Venable attorneys have particular experience representing individuals and businesses in the entertainment industry. Acutely familiar with entertainment-specific tax rules, our attorneys counsel major players on both income tax planning and estate planning. Our attorneys are experienced in setting up loan-out corporations (and other talent providers) for success, advising on the transfer of income rights, back-end payments, royalty rights, and incomplete non-grantor (ING) trusts. We also advise on sales of music assets, including catalog sales and related royalty, transfer, copyright, and termination rights.

Political Donation Compliance

As the laws governing major political donations continue to shift, our attorneys help individuals and organizations understand complex campaign finance and political contribution rules, foresee risk, and work strategically to structure compliant giving in a way that advances the donor's interests. With deep experience advising high-net-worth individuals and family offices, we routinely work with clients to vet contributions to federal, state, and local candidates and help clients understand the implications of such activity for their estate planning.

State and Federal Tax Controversy

Venable's Tax Controversies and Litigation Group combines proven advocacy skills with in-depth knowledge and experience to help clients navigate and successfully resolve even the most challenging tax disputes. We represent individuals, businesses, and nonprofits in all stages of tax disputes and criminal and civil litigation in state and federal courts. Our attorneys are dedicated to helping clients resolve every type of tax controversy, including audits, refund actions, collection disputes, and appeals to state and local taxing authorities.

Aircraft and Watercraft Leasing and Purchasing

Whether our clients want to fly through the air or sail across the sea, Venable can help them get there. We are experienced in handling transactions for financing, chartering, leasing, purchasing, and selling aircraft and watercraft. Our long-standing working relationship with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) counsel positions us to represent borrowers, purchasers, and lessees of commercial, corporate, and private aircraft. And with deep experience in the maritime sector, we advise on all phases of new yacht construction, from selling an existing ship to drafting new construction agreements. Additionally, we manage negotiations between parties seeking to charter ships and agencies representing ship owners.


  • Chambers High Net Worth
    • Private Wealth Law, District of Columbia, 2018 – 2023
    • Private Wealth Law, Maryland, 2018 – 2023
    • Private Wealth Law, Southern California, 2017 – 2023
    • Private Wealth Law, Eastern Region, USA, 2018 – 2021, 2023
  • Seven tax attorneys recognized by Best Lawyers in America
  • Two Washingtonian "Best Lawyers"