67th Annual Tax Conference

67th Annual
William & Mary Tax Conference
November 10 – 12, 2021


613 South Henry Street
(Free parking – No parking passes required)


5:00 - 7:00 p.m.

Topic            Fundamentals of Partnership Taxation 

Speakers:    Jon G. Neal, R. Darden Bell 

This program will be a classroom styled discussion on certain fundamentals of partnership taxation, focusing on Section 743(b) and 734(b) adjustments in the context of sales and redemptions of partnership interests, respectively.


1010 Kingsmill Road


8:00 - 8:20 a.m. - Registration and Continental Breakfast

 8:20 – 8:30 a.m. - Introductory Remarks

Jon G. Neal

 8:30 – 9:30 a.m.

Topic:         Recent Developments in Virginia Taxation through the Eyes of a SALT Practitioner

 Speaker:      Craig D. Bell

 A lively discussion of Virginia tax legislation, recent court decisions, rulings of the Tax Commissioner, and opinions of the Attorney General on matters of Virginia yaxation designed to keep the audience apprised of the current issues most typically being faced by taxpayers in Virginia, areas of concern by state and local tax officials, and trends observed in Virginia taxation by those who heavily practice in the area.

 9:30 – 9:45 a.m. - Refreshment Break

 9:45 – 10:45 a.m.

Topic:          Boxes and Triangles – Using Partnerships to Un-Box C Corporations    

Speakers:    Brian J. O’Connor, Steven R. Schneider 

Passthrough entities are more prevalent than ever, with partnerships at the top of the list.  This panel discusses how taxpayers can migrate assets into partnerships or other pass-through vehicles.  These experienced panelists will cover practical approaches for moving corporate assets such as freeze techniques, reorganizations, and REIT or S corporation elections.

 10:45 - 11:00 a.m. - Refreshment Break 

11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Topic:         Cryptocurrency Taxation

Speakers:    Eric D. Chason, Andrea S. Kramer 

Cryptocurrency (also known as virtual currency, digital assets, and tokens) are hot investment products with roughly a third of all investors holding cryptocurrency.  Tax rules have not kept up with the development of cryptocurrency products and transactions, and taxpayer compliance with the few rules offered up by the IRS is spotty at best. In this session, Andrea S. Kramer and Eric Chason will provide an overview of the cryptocurrency market and the confused state of federal taxation. They will provide participants with the building blocks they need to understand cryptocurrency transactions, apply relevant tax principles, and understand the tax treatment of cryptocurrency. 

 12:30 – 12:45 p.m. – Refreshment Break and Lunch Pick-up

 12:45 – 1:45 p.m.

Topic:          Tax Reform and Lessons from The Pandemic:  Reflections from the  48th IRS Chief Counsel 

Speaker:      Michael J. Desmond 

A confluence of recent events, including unprecedented federal spending, the role played by the IRS in delivering pandemic-related economic relief, and sweeping changes to the federal tax law, foreshadow an expanded role for the IRS as a benefit provider and, at the same time, a dramatically increased enforcement presence.  Drawing on his recent experience as IRS Chief Counsel, Michael Desmond will provide his perspective on the opportunities and challenges that taxpayers, their advisors and the IRS will face in this new and emerging environment. 

1:45 – 2:00 p.m. - Refreshment Break 

2:00 – 3:30 p.m.

Topic:         Real Estate Hot Topics 

Speakers:     Steven Friedman, Steven J. Giordano, Jason Dexter 

For many owners of income-producing real estate, the pandemic caused a boom to go bust.  Some businesses managed to survive, and even arrive back at boom.  Many landlords and their tenants spent the spring and summer of 2020 renegotiating their leases during an unprecedented (and unprecedently fluid) situation.  Deferral, abatement, and renegotiation were some of the more common strategies that tax advisers saw their clients exploring in response to the effects of the difficulties faced by businesses.  

This session will discuss federal income tax considerations associated with the life cycle of a landlord-tenant relationship.  Panelists will discuss, among other topics, the structure and accrual of rent, the treatment of tenant incentives, and the sharing of build-out costs, and will build on the hard lessons learned during the pandemic in discussing considerations relevant to distressed tenants.

​​​​​3:30 – 3:45 p.m. - Refreshment Break 

3:45 – 4:45 p.m.

Topic:         Estate Planning in an Age of Changing Tax Law 

Speakers:    Kristen F. Hager, William I. Sanderson 

This program will focus on recent developments concerning federal wealth transfer tax (estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer) law, including an update of related political developments. The program will address recent cases, rulings, and guidance, as well as areas of increased IRS focus, including related risks and planning opportunities, related to estate and gift tax.


1010 Kingsmill Road


 8:30 – 9:00 a.m. - Registration and Continental Breakfast 

9:00 – 10:00 a.m.

Topic:         Pending Regulatory Challenges to Select International Provisions of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act 

Speaker:      Loren C. Ponds 

This session will examine two recently filed cases, Liberty Global and FedEx, both of which raise novel arguments in asserting that the Treasury Department erred when it promulgated regulations amplifying sections 245A and 951A, respectively. Both cases levy substantive Chevron challenges and allege violations of the Administrative Procedure Act and raise important issues that are likely to become recurring themes as we begin to see more audit cycles examining TCJA-enacted provisions. 

10:00 – 10:15 a.m. - Refreshment Break 

10:15 – 11:45 a.m.

Topic:         Tax Controversy 

Speaker:      Craig D. Bell, Michael J. Desmond 

A long-term decline in IRS funding has resulted in historically low audit rates and enforcement activity in recent years, a trend that is now going through a noteworthy reversal.  With recent increases in funding, the IRS has begun ramping up hiring and is focusing increased attention on flow-through entities, high net worth individuals and identified areas of non-compliance including cross-border activities, structured financing arrangements and in-kind donations.  This panel will provide insight on how the increased IRS enforcement presence will play out in coming years in examinations, administrative appeals and in litigation.

 11:45 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. -  Lunch Pick-up 

12:00 – 1:00 p.m.

Lunch Session:   The Democratic Empire Strikes Back 

Speaker:      Russell W. Sullivan 

Congress passed bipartisan infrastructure legislation, but Democrats also passed two reconciliations bills carrying individual and green energy tax cuts.  Capital gains and individual tax rate increases and corporate/international tax hikes paid for them.  This presentation will tell you what passed, why it passed, and what remaining issues Treasury will resolve.  

1:00 – 1:15 p.m. - Refreshment Break 

1:15 – 2:15 p.m.

Topic:          Hot Topics and Trends in State and Local Tax (SALT) 

Speaker:      Ann T. Holley 

This session will cover recent trends in the state and local tax world, such as novel new state and local taxes and state conformity to federal legislation, and how these trends impact business taxpayers. We’ll also cover the myriad of SALT issues that arise with an increasingly mobile workforce. 

2:15 – 2:30 p.m. - Refreshment Break 

2:30 – 3:30 p.m.

Topic:         A Transactional View of Representations & Warranties Insurance and Tax Insurance 

Speakers:     Patrick J. Browne Jr., Ann Terrell Dorsett, Brian L. Hager, Jon G. Neal  

Moderator:  Jon G. Neal   

The use of R&W insurance and tax insurance is increasingly becoming part of our “deal DNA.”  This session will provide an overview of transactional risk insurance and the types of transactions in which such insurance is commonly used, with a particular focus on the use of tax insurance in the transactional context.   

3:30 – 3:45 p.m. -  Refreshment Break 

3:45 – 4:45 p.m.

Topic:         Federal Tax Update 

Speaker:      Stephen L. Owen 

This session will include a discussion of current developments and planning opportunities. The primary focus will be on transactions, including those involving limited liability companies and S corporations.