Mortimer M. Caplin

Mortimer M. Caplin: Attorney with Caplin & Drysdale, Chartered AV stamp icon
Attorney Awards

Biography

Mortimer Caplin, lawyer and educator, is a Founding Member of Caplin & Drysdale, Chartered. He holds B.S. and LL.B. degrees from University of Virginia and Doctor of Juridical Science from New York University. Mr. Caplin is now retired from the firm.

First in his class at UVA School of Law and Editor-in-Chief of Virginia Law Review, Mr. Caplin served as a law clerk to U.S. Circuit Judge Armistead M. Dobie. He then practiced law in New York City from 1941 to 1950, with time out for military service in the U.S. Navy. During the Normandy invasion he served as U.S. Navy beachmaster, cited as member of initial landing force on Omaha Beach.

In 1950, Mr. Caplin returned to UVA as professor of law, concentrating in tax and corporate law and publishing extensively in these fields. He also served as adjunct professor of law at The George Washington University Law School from 1965 to 1966 and at the University of Miami School of Law from 1967 to 1970. Additionally, Mr. Caplin engaged in practice as counsel to a Virginia law firm.

Government Experience

U.S. Commissioner, Internal Revenue Service, 1961-1964

Law Clerk, U.S. Circuit Judge Armistead M. Dobie, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, 1940-1941

Government Experience

Following President John F. Kennedy s election, Mr. Caplin served on the President s Task Force on Taxation and in January 1961 was appointed U. S. Commissioner of Internal Revenue. He remained in that post until July 1964 when he resigned and formed Caplin & Drysdale.

In his law practice, Mr. Caplin uses his broad experience dealing with U.S. Treasury Department, Internal Revenue Service, and U.S. Justice Department.

Highlights

Mr. Caplin has deep commitments to public service, teaching and the educational process itself. His contributions have been widely recognized:

•American Bar Foundation honored him at National World War II Museum in New Orleans founded by historian Stephen Ambrose .
•UVA presented him the Thomas Jefferson Medal in Law, the university's highest honor, and the William J. Brennan Jr. Award from its National Trial Advocacy Program
•Named Chevalier of the Legion of Honor by the President of the French Republic for his contributions to the United States' role in the liberation of France during World War II
•Maryland General Assembly official citation in recognition of appointment as Chevalier of the Legion of Honor.
•Medal of the Jubilee of Liberty authorized by the Governor of the Normandy Region
•Alexander Hamilton Award, highest award conferred by the Secretary of the Treasury, for distinguished leadership as IRS Commissioner.
•Achievement Award, Tax Society of New York University; Judge Learned Hand Human Relations Award, American Jewish Committee; Tax Executives Institute Distinguished Service Award; Federal Bar Association's Kenneth S. Liles Award; Federal Veterans of Foreign Wars Public Service Award.
•Professor Emeritus, University of Virginia, after service as Professor of Law (1950-1961) and Visiting Professor of Law (1965-1987)

Awards & Rankings

Best Lawyers in America, 1995-Present
University of Virginia Sawnson Courage Award, 2015
Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent

Recent Publications

• In Memoriam: Judge Lapsley W. Hamblen Jr., Tax Notes, November 26, 2012
• Senior Lawyer Mortimer Caplin Receives Two Prestigious Awards, Senior Lawyer News, June 1, 2009
• The Viability of Multidisciplinary Practice, The Insurance Tax Review, August 1, 2002
• The Viability of Multidisciplinary Practice, The Washington Lawyer, May 1, 2002
• The State of Lawyering, Senior Lawyer News, September 1, 2001
• 'If Americans Really Understood The Income Tax', Tax Notes, May 28, 2001
• Caplin Calls for Fairness and Simplification in New Tax Legislation, Tax Notes, March 5, 2001
• Now Is the Time to Reform the Tax Code, The Wall Street Journal, February 7, 2001

Recent Speaking Engagements

•Speaker, D-Day Experience, The Counsellors Luncheon, April 16, 2014
•Speaker, The Ethical Framework - Duties of the Tax Practitioner to the Client and to the System, University of Virginia Tax Foundation, 64th Annual Conference on Federal Taxation, June 7, 2012
•Speaker, Historical Perspective of the Code: Evolution and Mission of the IRS, Tax Executives Institute, Inc., Virginia Chapter Meeting, November 18, 2010
•Speaker, Guest Speaker, The Counsellors Luncheon, January 19, 2010

Recent News

Mr. Caplin is frequently quoted and referenced by the media. Recent media mentions include:

•Caplin & Drysdale Improves Ranking in 2019 Best Lawyers in America , August 15, 2018
•Mortimer Caplin Celebrates 102nd Birthday with Gift to UVA Law School, Caplin & Drysdale, July 11, 2018
•Caplin & Drysdale Earns Top Ranking in 2018 Best Lawyers in America , August 15, 2017
•Caplin & Drysdale Honors All Who Served in Our Nation's Military, Caplin & Drysdale, November 11, 2016
•Best Lawyers in America Lists 18 Caplin & Drysdale Attorneys, U.S. News & World Report, August 15, 2016
•Celebrating 100 Years with Tax Law Titan Mortimer Caplin, The National Law Journal, July 28, 2016
•The Real 'Most Interesting Man In The World' Celebrates 100th Birthday, Bisnow DC, July 22, 2016
•Mortimer Caplin put the ‘Service' in ‘Internal Revenue Service', The Washington Post, July 22, 2016
•Tax Analysts Features Former IRS Commissioner Mortimer Caplin, Tax Analysts, July 12, 2016
•UVA Honors Mortimer Caplin at 100th Birthday Celebration, The Daily Progress, July 11, 2016
•Washington Post Features 100-Year-Old Former IRS Commissioner Mortimer Caplin, The Washington Post, July 11, 2016
•Mortimer Caplin's Daughter to Toast His 100th Birthday at Play Premier, The Daily Progress, July 8, 2016
•Report References Mort Caplin's Comments on President Nixon's Tax Returns, Tax Notes, June 14, 2016
•Mortimer Caplin Looks Back on D-Day Service with NPR, NPR, June 13, 2016
•Mortimer Caplin Reflects on D-Day, DC Bar News, June 2, 2016
•UVA Pays Tribute to Alum Mort Caplin, UVA Lawyer, June 1, 2016
•99-Year-Old Former IRS Commissioner Mortimer Caplin on Life and Taxes, The Wall Street Journal, June 1, 2016
•UVA Pays Tribute to Alum Mort Caplin, UVA Lawyer, June 1, 2016
•Mortimer Caplin and Other Former IRS Commissioners Admonish Congress for IRS Budget Cuts, November 13, 2015
•Mortimer Caplin Receives Swanson Courage Award from the University of Virginia, Richmond Times Dispatch, October 26, 2015
•Caplin Alum Fay Vincent Reflects on His Mentor, Mort Caplin, The Wall Street Journal, August 19, 2015
•Caplin & Drysdale's Founder Reaches Another Milestone, July 10, 2015
•The University of Virginia Remembers Ruth Caplin, U.Va. ARTS Magazine, February 2, 2015
•Legal Bisnow Profiles Mortimer Caplin, Legal Bisnow, December 23, 2014
•Caplin & Drysdale Salutes Our Veterans, Caplin & Drysdale, November 11, 2014
•Mortimer Caplin Gives Opening Remarks at Event to Honor Federal Workers, Samuel J. Heyman Service to American Medals, September 22, 2014
•Caplin & Drysdale Lawyers Earn Best Lawyers Ranking, August 21, 2014
•Mortimer Caplin Recognized As Historic Member of American Bar Association, ABA Journal, August 11, 2014
•With Its Founders, Caplin & Drysdale Celebrates 50 Years of Excellence, Caplin & Drysdale, July 23, 2014
•Former IRS Commissioner Mortimer Caplin Celebrates 98th Birthday, Caplin & Drysdale, July 14, 2014
•Mortimer Caplin Comments on Former IRS Commissioner Walters, Tax Notes Today, June 27, 2014
•Mortimer Caplin Gives Keynote Address at Normandy Institute, Caplin & Drysdale, June 21, 2014
•The Washington Post Features Mortimer Caplin to Mark 70th Anniversary of D-Day, The Washington Post, June 6, 2014
•FOX 5 News Interviews Mortimer Caplin on 70th Anniversary of D-Day, Fox 5 News, June 5, 2014
•Mortimer Caplin Featured in Library of Congress Veterans History Project, Library of Congress, June 4, 2014
•Mortimer Caplin Honored for Military Service, Caplin & Drysdale, May 22, 2014
•Mortimer Caplin Elected Chair Emeritus of THIS for Diplomats, January 10, 2014
•The 2013 Mortimer Caplin Conference Convenes in Washington, Caplin & Drysdale, December 6, 2013
•Mortimer Caplin Featured at Newseum Event Marking JFK's Assassination, Newseum, November 25, 2013
•Washingtonian Magazine Features Mortimer Caplin in Special JFK Issue, Washingtonian Magazine, October 30, 2013
•19 Caplin & Drysdale Attorneys Achieve Best Lawyers in America Ranking, U.S. News & World Report, October 21, 2013
•CLIENT ADVISORY: Caplin & Drysdale Comments on the Government Shutdown's Impact on Business and Individual Taxpayers, Caplin & Drysdale, October 10, 2013
•Tax Notes Today Quotes Mortimer Caplin and Christopher Rizek: IRS Shutdown Adds to Economic Headwinds for Businesses, Individuals, Tax Notes Today, October 9, 2013
•Mortimer Caplin Comments on Government Shutdown, Accounting Today, October 7, 2013
•Mortimer Caplin Recognized as an Exemplar IRS Commissioner, Tax Notes, July 29, 2013
•Mortimer Caplin Discusses His First-Hand Experience of D-Day, WUSA CBS 9, FOX 5, June 6, 2013
•The Washington Post Quotes Mortimer Caplin: An 'Unthinkable' IRS Scandal? More Like Unavoidable., The Washington Post, May 17, 2013
•Danaher CEO Larry Culp Honors Longtime Board Member Mortimer Caplin, Caplin & Drysdale, May 8, 2013
•U.Va. Opens Innovative Ruth Caplin Theatre, Caplin & Drysdale, April 29, 2013
•Mortimer Caplin and Other Former IRS Commissioners File Brief With D.C. Circuit in Preparer Oversight Case, Tax Notes, April 8, 2013
•Tax Notes Quotes Mortimer Caplin Concerning Income Tax Alternative, Tax Notes, March 4, 2013
•Mortimer Caplin's Comments Concerning Former Partner Judge Albert Lauber, Tax Notes, March 4, 2013
•Tax Notes Quotes Mortimer Caplin on Alternative to Income Tax, Tax Notes, February 25, 2013
•Mortimer Caplin Steps Down from Danaher Board to Focus on Tax Law, Caplin & Drysdale, February 11, 2013
•The 2012 Mortimer Caplin Conference on the World Economy, Caplin & Drysdale, December 7, 2012
•Mortimer Caplin Profiled by THIS for Diplomats, THIS for Diplomats, October 12, 2012
•Mortimer Caplin Featured in Tax Notes, View From the Top: Former IRS Commissioners Remember the Job, Tax Notes, September 17, 2012
•Legal Bisnow Celebrates Mortimer Caplin's 96th Birthday, Legal Bisnow, July 12, 2012
•Legal Bisnow Calls Mortimer Caplin the Most Interesting Man in the World , Legal Bisnow, December 23, 2011
•National Portrait Gallery Exhibits Portrait of Caplin & Drysdale Founder Mortimer Caplin, National Portrait Gallery, November 18, 2011
•Mortimer Caplin Quoted in Bloomberg, Too Old for Murdoch Board Is Young Among Buffett's Octogenarian Directors, Bloomberg, September 15, 2011
•The Best Lawyers in America Ranks 19 Caplin & Drysdale Attorneys as Leaders in Their Field, U.S. News & World Report, September 1, 2011
•Mortimer Caplin Comments on Bernard Wolfman, Tax Analysts - Daily Tax Highlights & Documents, August 23, 2011
•Blast From the Past: Mortimer Caplin on Meet The Press - 1962, Meet the Press, August 4, 2011
•Legal Bisnow Profiles Mortimer Caplin, Legal Bisnow, January 11, 2011
•NPR Interviews Mortimer Caplin on Tax Code Reform, NPR News, December 18, 2010
•Mortimer Caplin Comments on Temporary Tax Provisions, The Wall Street Journal, December 14, 2010
•Mortimer and Ruth Caplin Contribute $4 Million to Help Fund UVa's Ruth Caplin Theatre, The Gazette, Washington Jewish Week, The Daily Progress, November 3, 2010
•Mortimer Caplin Criticizes Congress for Diverting IRS Tax Mission, Accounting Today, October 15, 2010
•UVa's Miller Center Hosts The Third Annual Mortimer Caplin Conference on the World Economy, Caplin & Drysdale, September 25, 2010
•Mortimer Caplin States Capitol Hill Employees Have a Special Obligation to Pay Taxes, The Washington Post, September 10, 2010
•University of Virginia Renames the Daniel Caplin Professorship in Law to the Mortimer M. Caplin Professorship in Law, Caplin & Drysdale, August 18, 2010
•Mortimer Caplin Comments on the IRS's Core Purpose, Tax Notes, August 9, 2010
•19 Caplin & Drysdale Attorneys Named Best Lawyers in America, U.S. News & World Report, August 4, 2010
•Mortimer Caplin Comments on the Federal Government's Tax Expenditures, Tax Notes, July 5, 2010
•Setting the Stage for UVA Drama Expansion, C-Ville, April 27, 2010
•Mortimer Caplin Supports GWU Students With the Mary Ellen Caplin Scholarship Fund, GW Magazine, December 4, 2009
•Miller Center Honors Mortimer Caplin With the Elizabeth Scott Award for Exemplary Leadership, Caplin & Drysdale, September 11, 2009
•Mortimer Caplin Remembers Sen. Edward Kennedy, Daily Progress, Richmond Times-Dispatch, News Virginian, August 27, 2009
•Caplin & Drysdale Founder Selected to Receive 2009 Elizabeth Scott Award for Exemplary Leadership, Caplin & Drysdale, August 11, 2009
• Charge to the Class, With Professor Kenneth S. Abraham, University of Virginia, April 22, 2009
•Mortimer Caplin Receives French Honor and University of Virginia's 2009 Brennan Award, UVA Today, March 5, 2009
•Mortimer Caplin Receives the French Republic's Esteemed Honor and University of Virginia's 2009 Brennan Award, American Bar Foundation Board News, February 10, 2009
•Mortimer Caplin Receives the French Republic's Esteemed Honor and University of Virginia's 2009 Brennan Award, January 15, 2009
•Caplin & Drysdale Founder Receives French Honor and University of Virginia's 2009 Brennan Award, Caplin & Drysdale, January 15, 2009
•Baucus Says Geithner ‘Clearly’ Will Win Confirmation, Bloomberg, January 14, 2009

, American Bar FoundationLife Member, American Law InstituteAmerican Bar Association (Section of Taxation)fellow, American College of Tax Counselfellow, American Tax Policy InstitutePresident, Indigent Civil Litigation FundU.S. Supreme Court Historical Society Professional ActivitiesServed as trustee of many educational and charitable entities:•Member, University of Virginia Board of Visitors •Member, University of Virginia Law School Foundation •Member, George Washington University •Member, Arena Stage •Member, Shakespeare Theatre •Member, Wolf Trap Foundation •Honorary Chair, UVA Council for the Arts •Member, Governing Council of the Miller Center at UVA •Chair, Board of Advisors, The Hospitality & Information Service for Diplomats ( THIS for Diplomats ).

(Retired)

Areas of Practice (4)

  • Business
  • Tax Controversies
  • Tax Litigation
  • Investment & Transactional Tax

Education & Credentials

Contact Information:
(202) 862-5050  Phone
www.caplindrysdale.com
University Attended:
University of Virginia, B.S., 1937 Phi Beta Kappa, Raven Society
Law School Attended:
University of Virginia School of Law, LL.B., Order of the Coif, 1940; New York University, J.S.D., 1953; St. Michael's College, LL.D., 1964; University of South Carolina, LL.D., 2006; Washington College, LL.D., 2006
Year of First Admission:
1941
Admission:
U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia; District of Columbia Court of Appeals; U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Columbia; U.S. Tax Court; 1964, District of Columbia; 1942, New York; 1941, Virginia; U.S. Supreme Court
Memberships:

Other Professional Affiliations

Member, Board of Directors, American Bar Foundation

D.C. Fellows, American Bar Foundation

Life Member, American Law Institute

Member, American Bar Association, Section of Taxation)

fellow, American College of Tax Counsel

fellow, American Tax Policy Institute

President, Indigent Civil Litigation Fund

Member, U.S. Supreme Court Historical Society

Professional Activities

Served as trustee of many educational and charitable entities:
•Member, University of Virginia Board of Visitors
•Member, University of Virginia Law School Foundation
•Member, George Washington University
•Member, Arena Stage
•Member, Shakespeare Theatre
•Member, Wolf Trap Foundation
•Honorary Chair, UVA Council for the Arts
•Member, Governing Council of the Miller Center at UVA
•Chair, Board of Advisors, The Hospitality & Information Service for Diplomats ( THIS for Diplomats )

ISLN:
908555275

Peer Reviews

5.0/5.0 (1 review)
A Martindale-Hubbell Peer Rating reflects a combination of achieving a Very High General Ethical Standards rating and a Legal Ability numerical rating.
  • Legal Knowledge

    5.0/5.0
  • Analytical Capability

    5.0/5.0
  • Judgment

    5.0/5.0
  • Communication

    5.0/5.0
  • Legal Experience

    5.0/5.0

*Peer Reviews provided before April 15, 2008 are not displayed.

Washington, District of Columbia

Contact Mortimer M. Caplin

Required Fields

Required Fields


By clicking on the "Submit" button, you agree to the Terms of Use, Supplemental Terms and Privacy Policy. You also consent to be contacted at the phone number you provided, including by autodials, text messages and/or pre-recorded calls, from Martindale and its affiliates and from or on behalf of attorneys you request or contact through this site. Consent is not a condition of purchase.

You should not send any sensitive or confidential information through this site. Emails sent through this site do not create an attorney-client relationship and may not be treated as privileged or confidential. The lawyer or law firm you are contacting is not required to, and may choose not to, accept you as a client. The Internet is not necessarily secure and emails sent though this site could be intercepted or read by third parties.