Practice Areas & Industries: Sutherland Asbill & Brennan LLP


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Practice/Industry Group Overview

Sutherland has an experienced, well-staffed team providing creative solutions in international tax planning, compliance, controversy and litigation.

Sutherland has more than 30 attorneys devoted to the increasingly complicated field of international tax. With our depth and breadth of experience, we offer our clients solutions tailored to their specific cross-border tax needs. We work with our clients to develop plans that tax-efficiently achieve their business objectives. We ensure that these objectives are achieved in a manner that is effective and as cost-efficient as possible. When controversies arise and litigation is necessary, we offer end-to-end service to resolve the situation. We understand that there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all strategy when it comes to tax planning.

We help clients find their way through the increasingly complicated maze of international tax obstacles involved with mergers, acquisitions and spin-offs; foreign tax credits; transfer pricing; foreign currency borrowings; swaps and derivatives; hedging transactions; and other treaty-related tax matters. We have found that understanding our clients’ business operations and objectives is the key to effectively managing all of this.

Our clients operate in a global economy and we appreciate the impact that the overall effective tax rate can have on a company’s operations. Working closely with trusted advisors throughout the world, we are able to provide our clients comprehensive international tax guidance.

Why Sutherland
Industry recognition.
Our international tax attorneys are often recognized by Chambers USA and Global, The Legal 500, International Tax Review and The Best Lawyers in America.

Inbound and outbound tax planning and compliance. Our international tax group regularly addresses the inbound and outbound tax consequences of cross-border transactions and investments. This includes structuring and implementing international financings and establishing overseas operations (e.g. insurance companies and mutual funds). Our team of international tax lawyers understands the considerations relevant to transnational mergers, acquisitions and dispositions; the tax implications of international licensing and technology transfers; the significance of transfer pricing to global operations; and the limitations and opportunities with respect to the use of foreign tax credits.

Transfer pricing. Our attorneys handle transfer pricing regulations and their application involving U.S. and non-U.S.-based multinationals. We have a deep knowledge of intercompany transactions (like tangible and intangible property and services) and can secure advance pricing agreements.

Government experience and relationships. Our Washington, DC, office has strong relationships with key personnel at the IRS, Treasury and United States Tax Court. We are the only law firm to have produced two former commissioners of IRS and a chief counsel of the IRS. Sutherland attorneys have experience at the IRS, Treasury, Justice Department and the Joint Committee on Taxation of Congress.

Strong litigation reputation. Our tax litigators have reputations for aggressively defending our clients' interests. Frequently, this encourages settlements before dispute resolution escalates and legal costs to our clients rise.

Financial markets. We have served as tax counsel for more than $100 billion of public and private debt offerings, primarily in foreign markets.

Strategic alliances. We work with trusted advisors throughout the world to address the needs of our clients’ business operations. Our close relationships with premier legal advisors outside the U.S. allow us to efficiently provide the right advice to our clients.

Nuts and Bolts
Sutherland attorneys advise on:

  • Inbound and outbound tax planning
  • Corporate restructurings
  • Foreign currency
  • Cross-border financing transactions
  • Foreign tax credit
  • Hedging transactions
  • Transfer pricing
  • Derivatives and interest rate and currency swaps
  • Licensing and technology transfers
  • Mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures
  • Repatriation
  • Subpart F
  • Financial products
  • Insurance and foreign mutual funds
  • Information reporting and tax withholding
  • IRS controversy and tax litigation
  • Competent authority
  • Private letter rulings and practice before the IRS

Take Action
Doing business globally requires customized tax advice from a firm that can provide end-to-end service. Sutherland's international tax team has the experience and the talent to provide for all aspects of international tax planning, compliance, controversy and litigation.

Selected Experience
Sutherland counsels a Fortune 500 manufacturing company with respect to transfer pricing positions.
Sutherland advises a large manufacturing company regarding transfer pricing considerations, including administrative and judicial defenses and advice with respect to application of treaties.

Sutherland acts as tax counsel in $25 billion spinoff.
Sutherland acts as tax counsel to Mondelez International in its approximately $25 billion spinoff of Kraft Foods Group.

Sutherland represents a U.K. multinational corporation regarding federal tax in certain cross-border transactions.
Sutherland advises a U.K.-based multinational corporation in connection with proposed U.S. federal income tax adjustments in certain cross-border transactions.

Articles Authored by Lawyers at this office:

Impact of International Tax Reform Proposals on U.S. Insurance Companies
Dennis L. Allen,Thomas A. Gick,Jerome B. Libin,Jeffrey H. Mace,Michael R. Miles, November 27, 2013
On November 19, retiring Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) released a “Discussion Draft” setting forth his international tax reform proposals. Of note, the Discussion Draft includes several proposals that target the international operations of U.S. insurance...

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Baucus Releases International Business Tax Reform Discussion Draft
, November 27, 2013
On November 19, 2013, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) released a “Discussion Draft” of international tax reform proposals. The Discussion Draft proposes significant changes to the taxation of foreign income, including substantially expanding the definition of...

No Longer at Sea: IRS Finalizes Safe Harbor Reduction Regulations
, November 25, 2013
On November 14, 2013, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued final regulations that permit employers to suspend or reduce safe harbor nonelective contributions under a 401(k), 401(m), or 403(b) plan during the plan year. The final regulations also revise the requirements that apply to mid-year...

IRS Issues Final Regulations Regarding Transfers of Derivative Contracts
Robert S. Chase,Daniel R.B. Nicholas,Amish M. Shah,Rich Sun, November 15, 2013
On November 5, 2013, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued final regulations relating to the transfer or assignment of certain derivative contracts. The final regulations, which are provided as Treas. Reg. § 1.1001-4, address:

IRS Modifies “Use-It-Or-Lose-It” Rule for Health FSAs
, November 08, 2013
In Notice 2013-71 (Notice), the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) relaxed its longstanding “use-it-or-lose-it” rule for health flexible spending accounts (Health FSAs). Employees may now be permitted to carry over up to $500 of their unused Health FSA balances to the following plan year to...

IRS Issues Draft FATCA FFI Agreement and Announces Positive New Rules for Insurance Companies
Dennis L. Allen,Jeffrey H. Mace,Michael R. Miles,M. Kristan Rizzolo,Carol P. Tello, November 04, 2013
On October 29, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2013-69, which includes guidance to foreign financial institutions (FFIs) entering into FFI agreements with the IRS and a draft FFI agreement. The Notice also describes some of the changes the IRS intends to make to the recently...