Jim has extensive experience working with individuals, businesses, and families. The most important aspect of being an attorney is to carefully listen to the client, determine their needs, and tailor your representation to meet those needs. Jim has been in practice since 1986. He started my own law firm in 2006 and Tom Barnes joined shortly thereafter. Jim has an extensive practice in the areas of estate and disability planning, elder law, estate administration, and estate administration, guardianships, business succession planning, and corporate matters.
Wills and Trusts are the beginning foundation to a proper estate plan. Jim takes the time to listen to the client, find out their needs, and prepare the correct documents to meet those needs. Those documents include Wills, Letters of Instructions, General Powers of Attorney, and Medical Power of Attorney. In addition, Jim helps client with more complex estate planning needs that can include preparation and implementation of Living Trusts, Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust (ILIT), and where necessary consultation with clients on Federal Estate and Pennsylvania Inheritance Tax planning options.
As an adjunct to estate and disability planning, in appropriate circumstances, Jim provides elder law planning advice, including nursing home options and Medicaid planning to minimize spend-down effect and husband and wife retention of assets associated with Medicaid planning; preparation of Medicaid Application and consults with the Department of Public Welfare with respect to Medicaid Application and implementation.
Jim’s responsibilities include representation of estates from probate process through audit and decree of distribution. Estate administration matters include preparation of inventory, preparation of Pennsylvania Inheritance Tax Return, preparation of Federal Estate Tax Return, State and Federal Fiduciary Income Tax Returns, real estate sales, including preparation of Agreement of Sale and Fiduciary Deed and attendance at Closing, individual income tax preparation for Decedent’s estate for Final Income Tax Returns, and representation of Executor/Administrator through entire probate process and arrangement for Appraisals such as personal property appraisals, business appraisals and real estate appraisals.
Guardianship proceedings occur when one can no longer handle their own needs for any number of reasons. Jim often meets with families of loved ones who are in that position and assist on filing the necessary documents to have a guardian appointed by the courts. Occasionallya guardianships is contested or there is a disagreement on who is in the best position to be appointed as a guardian. In those cases, Jim will represent one of the parties to advocate for their right to serve as guardian.
Every business needs a succession plan. When there is more than one owner or the business is to be transferred to a relative, a well thought out business succession plan is vital to the continuing success of the business. As part of his responsibilities, Jim meets with the owners, listens to their objective and plan to meet their needs. This could include the preparation of corporate buy-out or cross purchase agreements, stock sale agreements, business trusts, and filing of related documents.
Many of Jim’s clients, as part of their succession plan, have asked that he provide counsel into other business matters including restructuring and the purchase of assets that best suits the owner’s needs and stated goals. As part of his practice he provide consultation to a limited number of corporations, limited liability companies, and family partnerships in a number of related business matters. This could include purchase of assets, employment, consultant, and subcontractor agreements, formation and other related matters.
- The University of the South, School of Theology, EFM 2006
- St. John’s School of Law, Juris Doctor: 1986
- Hofstra University, BBA Finance: 1980
- MILITARY SERVICE: 1975 -1978 US Army Flight engineer, door gunner UH-1H helicopters
- MEMBER: National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Pennsylvania and Montgomery County Bar Association.
- ADMITTED: U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals, U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, US District Court for the Southern District of New York, US District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, New Jersey Supreme Court, New York Court, and Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
- Adjunct Chaplain, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania
- Ordained Minister, Christian Universalist
Tom advises individuals and their families on all aspects of estate and tax planning, including estate and gift tax, income tax and related matters. In addition, Tom represents fiduciaries in estate and trust administration matters and acts as a fiduciary for families.
Tom provides general corporate and strategic business counseling to executives and owners of private companies on a range of issues, including business formation, mergers and acquisitions, debt and equity financing and succession planning. Tom works extensively with both early-stage and
mature businesses in a several industries, including technology, publishing, retail, commercial real estate and manufacturing. He counsels clients on contract matters with customers and suppliers, landlords and tenants, employee liability matters and the rights and obligations of company owners. Tom is also experienced in securities and corporate financing laws and transactions. He also represents debtors and creditors in federal bankruptcy matters.
Tom is admitted to the practice of law in Pennsylvania, and is admitted to the bars of the courts of that state, as well as the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.
Tom writes and speaks on estate planning and administration, and business succession planning topics. Tom is a part-time Lecturer at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
Tom advises individuals and their families on all aspects of wills and trusts, including generation-skipping tax, gift tax, income tax and related matters. In addition, Tom represents fiduciaries in estate and trust administration matters and acts as a fiduciary for families. He also advises clients on all aspects of charitable giving. Tom provides advice on personal income tax, fiduciary income tax and Orphans’ Court litigation; handles the administration of trusts; and creates irrevocable trusts and advises on related tax planning matters.
Recent matters include:
- Wills, trusts, gift and retirement planning; asset protection planning; powers of attorney; living wills; and family partnership agreements.
- Business continuity planning, succession and liquidity planning.
- Settlement of decedent’s estates and administration of trusts, including preparation of accounts and federal and state death tax and fiduciary income tax returns, income tax and trust modifications.
- Representation of individuals serving as trustees and executors.
- Fiduciary and Tax Litigation, including representation of executors, trustees and beneficiaries in disputes involving wills, trusts, taxation of estates and trusts and related matters.
Tom provides general corporate and strategic business counseling to executives and owners of private companies on a range of issues, including business formation, mergers and acquisitions, debt and equity financing and succession planning. Tom works extensively with both early-stage and mature businesses in several industries, including technology, publishing, retail, commercial real estate and manufacturing. He counsels clients on contract matters with customers and suppliers, landlords and tenants, employee liability matters and the rights and obligations of company owners. Tom is experienced in securities and corporate financing laws and transactions. He also represents debtors and creditors in federal bankruptcy matters.
Tom’s business law experience also includes:
- Counseled a public company in a PIPE transaction; and on compliance with ongoing SEC reporting obligations and compliance with other securities laws.
- Advised a corporate buyer in the acquisition of assets being divested by the seller as a carve-out of a non-core business.
- Advised a corporate buyer in the acquisition of the assets of an existing business, including the lease of a distressed real property asset of the seller.
- Provided securities regulatory compliance advice to a FINRA-member securities broker-dealer, including compliance and enforcement matters. Advised broker-dealer with respect to due diligence for PIPE transactions by NASDAQ-listed and OTC issuers.
- Counseled fund sponsor in the formation and administration of private equity fund for purchase of distressed debt.
- Represented issuer in formation of entity and private placement of equity for start-up financing, corporate governance matters.
- Represented issuer in formation, issuance of equity interests, corporate governance matters, issuance and taxation of carried interests
- Represented a commercial lender in documenting real estate and other asset-based financing transactions.
- Advised shareholder with respect to rights and obligations in a negotiated sale of privately held stock in several regional manufacturing concerns
- Represented commercial real estate investor in matters arising from the acquisition of distressed property at judicial sale, workout of property tax lien.
- Represented court-appointed receiver of sports and fitness clubs, advised on disposition of real property, workout of mortgage loans, claims of unsecured creditors
- Advised investment advisor in the acquisition of investment advisory business of competitor
- Counseled shareholders with interests in closely held businesses in succession planning, including the reorganization and recapitalization in furtherance of wealth transfer plans for shareholders and their families.
- Advised founders of niche publishing company in the formation and operation the corporate entity, including corporate finance and governance matters.
- Represented a developer in the formation and capitalization of single purpose entity designed to acquire property for the development of a large student housing project.
- Advised a commercial real estate investor in the renegotiation of a commercial lease.
Tom represents real estate investors, developers and owners in the purchase and sale of real estate. He has extensive experience in negotiating and documenting commercial mortgage loans for both lenders and borrowers, including traditional term loans, lines of credit and construction loans.
- Villanova University School of Law – J.D. (1982)
- Villanova University College of Commerce and Finance – B.S. in Accounting (1979)
- Germantown Academy, Fort Washington, PA (1975)
- Temple University – MBA in Finance (2004)