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Overview

"Mark has extraordinary analytical skills and the rare ability to distill and explain complex concepts to clients and non-tax practitioners. He is without question one of the best tax lawyers in the state, if not the region." 

As a Partner and Chair of the Firm’s Tax and Employee Benefits Department, Mark’s practice focuses on resolving clients’ state, local and federal tax issues through planning, audit management, administrative protest, negotiated settlement, administrative hearings, litigation, and appeals up to and including the U.S. Supreme Court. He is licensed to practice in Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, and Tennessee and represents multi-state and multinational companies to small businesses and their owners, striving to deliver value to every client.

Mark understands the opportunities and difficulties his clients face every day because he has stood in their shoes. Prior to joining BGD, Mark managed the state and local tax function for the U.S. subsidiary of British American Tobacco, Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation, multi-billion dollar corporation with operations in all 50 states. Mark is also a Certified Public Accountant and has an MBA, having begun his career with Coopers & Lybrand, now PricewaterhouseCoopers. Mark also serves as the chair of the Board of Directors of Park Community Credit Union, an $800+ million dollar financial institution. With this unique background, Mark empathizes with his clients and works hard to find creative solutions for them.

Mark is Martindale-Hubbell AV® Preeminent™ Rated, the highest rating available and is the recipient of the 2015 Institute of Professionals in Taxation (IPT) New Member Achievement Award. He is the co-chair of the ABA/IPT Advanced Property Tax Seminar, co-chair of IPT’s Basic Income Tax School, chair of the Editorial Board of The Kentucky CPA Journal, and chair of the Kentucky Society of Certified Public Accountants’ Taxation Committee, among other endeavors. He is a past chair of the Tax Section of the Kentucky Bar Association and of the Tax Section of the Louisville Bar Association,  and is also a former member of the KyCPA’s Board of Directors and former chair of its Educational Foundation. He has written extensively on tax matters in publications such as The Tax Lawyer, the Journal of State Taxation, and State Tax Notes, among others. He has been a speaker and panelist on various tax matters at conferences, forums and for groups such as Council on State Taxation, IPT, ABA, the Federation of Tax Administrators, and others.

Career Highlights

Representative Cases and Achievements

Mark is not only a leader at BGD. He has been recognized as a leader in the tax area in Kentucky and localities in Kentucky (e.g., Louisville Metro Revenue, etc.), Indiana, Ohio, Tennessee, and across the country and at the national level for taxes and fees administered by the Internal Revenue Services, Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, and others.

He has represented clients before tax tribunals including the Kentucky Claims Commission (formerly the Board of Tax Appeals), Ohio Board of Tax Appeals, Indiana Tax Court, and others, as well as county circuit courts, state courts of appeal, state supreme courts and federal courts including district court, courts of appeal, and the United States Supreme Court.

He has resolved tax issues involving most types of taxes: corporate, personal and trust income; gross receipts (including the Kentucky Limited Liability Entity Tax); sales tax; property tax; and, excise taxes (including cigarette, tobacco, and vapor product excise taxes, fuel taxes, U-Drive-It taxes, motor vehicle taxes, etc.).

Mark is currently involved in or has been involved in the following cases: 

  • Ryan Legg Irrevocable Trust v. Testa, 2016-Ohio-8418, 2016 WL 7449356 (Ohio 2016), petition for cert. denied, (U.S. 2017) (No. 17-84) (due process challenge)
  • Humana Inc. v. Dep’t of Revenue, File No. K16-R-03, Order No. K-25212 (Ky. Claims Comm’n Feb. 2, 2017), on appeal, No. 2017-CI-001265 (Ky. Cir. Ct. 2017) (pending) (sales and use tax dispute involving manufacturing)
  • Kroger Limited Partnership I v. Scott County Property Valuation Admin., et al. File No. K16-S-07, Order No. K-25128 (Ky. Bd. Tax App. Jul. 12, 2016), on appeal, No. 16-CI-00435 (Ky. Cir. Ct. 2016) (pending) (property tax dispute involving big box grocery store)
  • The Auto Place, LLC, et al. v. Testa, Case Nos. 2015-474, 2015-475, 2015-479 (Ohio Bd. Tax. App. 2015) (pending) (sales and consumer use tax dispute involving purchases and sales of high-value classic cars)
  • Ashland Specialty Co., Inc. v. Matkovich, Civil Action No. 14-AA-102 (W. Va. Cir. Ct. 2017), on appeal, No. 17-0437 (W. Va. 2017) (pending) (abuse of discretion and excessive fines dispute involving a tax penalty)
  • Lafarge North America, Inc. v. Testa, Case No. 2015-763 (Ohio Bd. Tax App. Jun. 21, 2016), on appeal, Case No. 2016-1074 (Ohio 2017) (pending) (sales and consumer use tax dispute involving manufacturing)
  • OVWD, Inc. v. Commonwealth, et al., No. 2015-CA-000754-MR (Ky. Ct. App. Mar. 24, 2017), on appeal, 2017-SC-000194 (Ky. 2017) (pending) (motion for discretionary review to Kentucky Supreme Court involving Section 2 of the Kentucky Constitution and exhaustion of administrative remedies)
  • OVWD, Inc. v. Commonwealth, et al., File No. 13-R-15, (Ky. Bd. Tax App.) (pending) (cigarette tax dispute involving out-of-state sales)
  • LaRue County Geriatric Center, Inc. c/o Signature Healthcare v. LaRue County Property Valuation Admin. et al., File No. K16-S-76 (Ky. Claims Comm’n) (pending) (property tax dispute involving not-for-profit nursing home)
  • T-Mobile South, LLC v. Kentucky Commercial Radio Service Emergency Telecommunications Board, Nos. 09-CI-1436; 15-CI-1124 (Ky. Cir. Ct.) (pending) (CMRS fee common law refund claim for prepaid wireless charges)
  • Wal-Mart Stores East, LP, et al. v. Dep’t of Revenue, No. 2016-SC-000550 (Ky. Mar. 15, 2017) (refund claim involving Section 51 and Section 180 of the Kentucky Constitution)
  • St. Andrew Orthodox Church, Inc. v. Thompson, No. 2007-SC-640-DG (Ky. May 18, 2009) (first impression case on a constitutional amendment exempting property of religious institutions)
  • Dept. of Revenue v. Marquette Transportation Co., LLC, Nos. 2006-CA-002639-MR, 2007-CA-016666-MR and 2007-CA-001722-MR, (Ky. App Apr. 3, 2009) motion for discretionary review denied, No. 2009-SC-000261 (Ky.) (corporate income and license tax case involving exclusion of towboat employees' compensation from computation of Kentucky payroll factor for apportionment purposes)
  • Asworth Corp v. Dept. of Revenue, Nos. 2007-CA-002549 and 2008-CA-000023 (Ky. App) (first impression Kentucky case regarding whether non-resident corporate partner without physical presence in Kentucky is subject to Kentucky corporate income tax)
  • AT&T Corporation and Subsidiaries v. Dept. of Revenue, No. 2008-CA-1888 (Ky. App) (corporation income tax case involving whether an elective consolidated corporation income tax return statute trumps physical presence nexus provisions)
  • Monumental Life Ins. Co. v. Department of Revenue, 201 S.W.3d 500 (Ky. App. 2006) (first impression case on duty of administrative agency to preserve administrative record)

Awards

Mark has been recognized across multiple states and nationally for his tax law achievements. Below are a few examples of that recognition:

  • Named to Louisville Business First's 20 People to Know in Accounting, 2017
  • Institute for Professionals in Taxation’s New Member Achievement Award, 2015
  • Recognized in the Kentucky Super Lawyers® lists, 2015-2017
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV® Preeminent™ Rated
  • Recognized by the Kentucky Society of Certified Public Accountants as an Outstanding Chairperson for the 2009-2010 year

Affiliations

Professional Affiliations

  • American Bar Association
  • Kentucky Bar Association 
  • Louisville Bar Association
  • American Institute of Certified Public Accountants
  • Kentucky Society of Certified Public Accountants

Community Involvement

Professional Leadership

Mark acts as a leader both inside and outside of the Firm. Below are a few examples of his outside leadership:

  • Co-Chair, Institute for Professionals in Taxation/American Bar Association Advanced Property Tax Seminar Committee, 2010-Present
  • Institute for Professionals in Taxation Basic State Income Tax School Committee, 2009-Present; Co-Chair, 2014-Present
  • Member, Kentucky Society of Certified Public Accountants Board of Directors, 2007-2010
  • Past Chair, Tax Section, Kentucky Bar Association, 2008-2009 
  • Past-Chair, Tax Section, Louisville Bar Association, 2006
  • Trustee, Kentucky Institute on Federal Taxation, 2005-2007
  • Past Chair, Kentucky Society of Certified Public Accountants Taxation Committee (named outstanding Chair, 2005-2006 and 2006-2007)
  • Employee of COST (Council on State Taxation) Member Company, 1992-2003
  • Tax Executives Institute, 1997-2003

Civic and Charitable Involvement

As a native Louisvillian and Kentuckian, Mark is committed to helping his community succeed. Throughout the years, he has been involved in multiple organizations including, but not limited to:

  • Trustee, Louisville Zoo Foundation Board of Trustees, 2014-Present
  • Trustee, Educational Foundation of the Kentucky Society of Certified Public Accountants, 2010-Present (Chair, 2011-2012)
  • Board Member, Park Community Federal Credit Union Board of Directors, 2005-Present (Chair, 2014-Present)
  • Past Vice-Chair, B&W Federal Credit Union Board of Directors (2002 until merged with Park Community Federal Credit Union in 2005)

Media

Contributions & Published Works

"Tax in the Bluegrass," The Kentucky CPA Journal, 2007-Present

Other Contributions

  • “O Preemption Where Art Thou?: ERISA’s Lost State and Local Tax Preemption,” The State and Local Tax Lawyer, co-author, Summer 2011 edition
  • "State Tax Notes," Kentucky Correspondent, 2005-Present

News

Events

Presentations

  • "Trends in State & Local Tax Law - What's New?," Thomson Reuters Webinar, September 19, 2017
  • "The Ever-Changing Tax Law – What’s New?," 41st Annual IPT Annual Conference, July 2017
  • "Ethics," IPT State Tax School II, June 2017
  • "Pass Through and Disregarded Entities," "Ethics," "Tax Return Basics," "Handling Income Tax Audit," "Researching and Documenting Findings," IPT State Tax School I, June 2017
  • "Basics of Apportionment and Allocation of Income for Multi-state Income Taxes," CPA Academy Webinar, August 14, 2017
  • "Tax Reform in 2017: A Boon or a Bane?" The Knowledge Group Webinar, June 28, 2017
  • "Kentucky Tax Reform Predictions," KyCPA Spring Business Conference, April 20, 2017
  • "Impact of Environmental Issues on Property Tax Assessments: Potential Tax Reduction Opportunities that May Offset Environmental Compliance Costs," 15th Annual Kentucky Environmental Conference, March 28, 2017
  • "Don't Drop the Ball on Drop Shipments and Inventory Transfers," 2017 COST Sales Tax Conference and Audit Session, February 26-March 1, 2017
  • “Property Tax Cases and Issues That Arose in 2016 and What to Watch for in 2017 and Beyond,” 2016 COST Fall Property Tax Workshop, September 19–20, 2016
  • "What CPAs Need to Know About Sales Tax Nexus," CPA Web Engage Webinar, 2016
  • Ohio Tax Conference, Workshop Leader, 2016
  • "What State’s My Trust In? Can I Move It? Income Tax Situs of Trusts and Related Issues," Indianapolis Bar Association, 2015
  • "Federal and State Tax Changes: What Matters to Small Business," KyCPA Small Business Conference, Louisville, Kentucky, June 21, 2013
  • "Tax Savings for Exporters with an IC-DISC," KyCPA Lunchbox Series Webinar, April 17, 2013
  • “Domestic International Sales Corporation Planning,” Strafford Publications, Inc. Webinar, March 7, 2013
  • “Tax Update:  What’s Going on Across the Border in Kentucky and Indiana,” Ohio Society of CPAs, Southwest Ohio Tax Update, January 9, 2013
  • “Reverse Audits and Sales Tax Refunds,” Strafford Publications, Inc. Webinar, December 13, 2012
  • “State Tax Audit Defense,” Kentucky Society of Certified Public Accountants, Accounting, Business and Technology  Expo, December 12, 2012
  • “Kentucky and Indiana Tax Update:  What’s Going on Across the Boarder,” Ohio Society of CPAs, September 20, 2012
  • “Nexus Reviews: Uncovering State Sales or Income Tax Obligations,” Strafford Publications, Inc. Webinar, August 1, 2012
  • "Tax Audit Defense of Independent Contractor Arrangements," KyCPA Financial Professionals Conference, Louisville, Kentucky, April 18, 2012
  • "Tax Audit Defense of Independent Contractor Arrangements," KyCPA Kentucky State Tax Conference, Louisville, Kentucky, January 9, 2012 
  • “O Preemption Where Art Thou?: ERISA’s Lost State and Local Tax Preemption,” The State and Local Tax Lawyer, Vol. 64, No. 4 (Summer 2011)
  • “IC-DISC: Mastering Intricacies of the Federal Tax Incentive for Exporters,” Strafford Publications, December 15, 2010

Services

Industries

Bellarmine College, B.A., Accounting, summa cum laude, 1989

University of Louisville, M.B.A., with distinction, 1996

University of Louisville, Louis D. Brandeis School of Law, J.D., Class Salutatorian, magna cum laude, 2001

  • Kentucky, 2001
  • Indiana, 2006
  • Ohio, 2010
  • Tennessee, 2010
  • United States Tax Court, 2004
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Kentucky, 2004
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Kentucky, 2010
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, 2010
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 2010
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