OUR FIRM


Our law firm is focused on providing the highest quality legal advice in our areas of expertise in banking law, tax litigation, business law and mediation services. 


The types of financial institution matters that we handle include conducting bank mergers and acquisitions, assisting banks in troubled condition that are subject to cease and desist orders, defending banks and their directors and officers in enforcement actions, advising banks and savings associations on financial institutions regulatory issues, and assisting bank holding companies in private offerings to accredited investors. 


The types of tax matters that we handle include audits, appeals, controversy and refund litigation, IRS criminal and grand jury investigations and tax issues of financial institutions. 

EXPERTISE


Financial Institutions Law.  Dave Berson is a Partner of our firm who has over 24 years of experience in financial institutions law.  During this time, Dave conducted bank mergers and acquisitions, assisted banks in troubled condition that were subject to cease and desist orders, defended banks and their directors and officers in enforcement actions, and advised banks and savings associations about financial institution regulatory issues.  Prior to founding this law firm, Dave was a Partner in the Financial Services Practice Group of Stinson Morrison Hecker LLP in Kansas City.  Dave was also the Chair of the ABA Subcommittee on State Banking Law from 2005 to 2007.  Since 2005, Kansas City Business Journal has listed Dave as one Kansas City’s “Best of the Bar.”  Dave is currently a member of the Bank Counsel Advisory Board of the Missouri Bankers Association.  To see Dave’s full biography, go to the Banking section of this web site. 


Tax Consultation and Litigation.  Susan Berson is a Partner of our firm who has over 23 years of experience in tax litigation and regulation.  She specializes in representing entrepreneurs and businesses against the IRS and the U.S. Department of Justice at all stages of civil and criminal investigations, as well as at all levels of the federal court system.  Susan began her career as a trial attorney in the Honors Program with the United States Department of Justice Tax Division in Washington, D.C., where she received an Outstanding Attorney Award from the Attorney General in 1996.   Susan was also a Partner in the Business Litigation Division of Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP in Kansas City.  In 2001, she authored the treatise Federal Tax Litigation, published by the Law Journal Press, which is in use by law schools and tax practitioners around the country.  In 2008, she authored The Modern Rules of Personal Finance for Professionals, published by the American Bar Association.  In 2009, she authored The Lawyer’s Retirement Planning Guide (American Bar Association 2009).  In 2011, she coauthored The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act: From Legislation to Implementation to Litigation (American Bar Association 2011).  Since 2005, Kansas City Business Journal has listed Susan as one of Kansas City’s “Best of the Bar.”  She also works with accounting professionals who seek her counsel when the possibility of litigation against the IRS appears to be on the horizon.  To see Susan’s full biography, go to the Tax section of this web site. 


Internal Investigations.  Susan Berson has discreetly handled internal investigations for both large financial services companies and small businesses.  She has handled internal investigations into allegations of fraud, embezzlement, self-dealing, white collar crime, filing false records, and other misconduct by officers, directors and employees.


Business Contracts.  Dave Berson has prepared and filed the appropriate corporate documentation to form, merge, reorganize and dissolve Kansas and Missouri corporations and limited liability companies.  He has also represented numerous businesses in the negotiation and preparation of business contracts, including employment agreements, consulting agreements, services agreements and leases for corporations, banks and limited liability companies. 


Business Litigation.  Susan Berson has handled numerous business litigation issues for financial institutions and small businesses, including disputes related to insurance coverage, creditor claims, lender liability, joint ventures, business torts, unfair competition and bankruptcy.


Mediation Services.  Susan Berson is a certified mediator. She has mediated an array of claims and disputes that commonly arise in consumer, corporate, lender and franchise relationships. Examples of these claims and disputes include allegations of: common law claims of breach of contract, good faith and fair dealing, fraud and dishonesty, fraud in connection with extending credit, obtaining guarantees, pulling lines of credit and refusing to extend credit, and joint venture insurance sales, various state statutory specific unfair and deceptive trade practices acts, and usury statutes/Federal preemption matters, as well as other Federal subjects including injunctive relief, RICO laws, Fair Credit Reporting Act, Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, Truth-in-Lending Act and Federal tax issues. 


Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (“OVDP”) . Since 2009, the IRS has maintained a program to handle the proper reporting of offshore accounts with the U.S. government. Our firm has experience in analyzing the merits of participating in this program, from considering the potential consequences of “opting out” to the procedures for compliance with offshore account reporting requirements involving Form TD F 90-22.1 (Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts)(commonly referred to as “FBAR” reporting requirements).  Making informed decisions about the program, and considering whether circumstances present opportunities to seek relief from certain penalties for noncompliance are subjects in which our firm can guide individuals, investors, and business owners towards resolution.

FBAR Compliance.  The Bank Secrecy Act (“BSA”) empowers the U.S. Department of Treasury with the authority to establish and enforce record keeping and filing requirements applicable to individuals, banks, and businesses which have financial interests in and/or signature authority concerning financial accounts maintained in foreign countries.  Our firm has experience in the preparation stages for ensuring compliance as well as the audit stage should a notice be received for non-compliance. 

Withholding Taxes, Sales Taxes, Use Taxes.  The IRS and state departments of revenue routinely focus on withholding requirements for businesses and employers.  This is especially pertinent to service industry professionals --from attorneys, doctors, dentists, to cash-based businesses, such as restaurants, spas and salons to technology and “IT” contractors—where an IRS revenue agent or state tax auditor is statutorily charged with the responsibility of carefully scrutinizing the withholding and proper payment of taxes practices employers may implement when hiring independent contractors and employees. Susan Berson has significant experience handling IRS audits and state sales and use tax audits, appeals and controversies. From pre-planning review to implementation of proper record keeping practices to handling actual audits, appeals, and defending officers who may be surprised to find that the government is assessing them for the unpaid tax liabilities of their businesses.  If you are the owner, officer or director of a business facing audit scrutiny from the IRS, or states of Missouri and Kansas, Susan can help you evaluate your circumstances, including an honest analysis of the most cost-effective options to move forward and continue with your operations’ goals. 


SERVICE


As our Partners have spent much of their careers working at large law firms, we pride ourselves on providing the very best in client service.  Our firm has also implemented the very latest advancements in computer and telecommunications technology to provide you with responsive and efficient service.  


PERSONAL ATTENTION


Your matters will be handled by our Partners from start to finish.  Your important work will not be delegated to an inexperienced junior associate attorney. 

VALUE


As we have lower overhead expenses than large law firms in Kansas City, we can offer top quality legal services with lower hourly rates.  Our Partners have significantly reduced their hourly fee rates from those that they charged as partners at large Kansas City law firms.  Certain legal matters may also be serviced for a fixed fee.  

CONTACT US


Our contact information is set forth in the Contact Us section of this website.  Please be aware that neither visiting this site nor exchanging an email with any of the attorneys at our law firm will create an attorney-client relationship.  Our law firm will enter into such a relationship only after ensuring that no conflict of interest exists and mutually agreeing on essential matters, including the scope of representation and any fee and expense arrangements. In the event that we agree to be retained as your counsel, we will provide you with a proposed engagement letter containing the terms and conditions upon which we may be willing to accept engagement as your counsel.  Until such time as we have mutually agreed in writing that you have engaged us as your counsel, please do not consider that you are in an attorney-client relationship with us or any of our attorneys.  Until our law firm enters into an attorney-client relationship with you, any communications between you and this law firm will not be covered by laws that protect the confidentiality of attorney-client communications.  Therefore, please do not send us information until you speak with one of our attorneys and get authorization to send that information to us.




© 2013 Berson Law Group LLP