May 9, 2005 SAN FRANCISCO – LAWFUEL – The Law News Network – Reed Smith LLP, a top-25 international law firm, announces the addition of Jim Kleier, John Messenger and Brian Toman as partners in the Regulatory Litigation Group in the firm’s San Francisco office.
“The arrival of this group provides further evidence of the momentum Reed Smith is building in the San Francisco market,” said David A. Thompson, managing partner of the San Francisco office. “Last year we added 13 attorneys to our ranks and this year are on pace to do the same. These three are going to be a particularly important addition, not only because of the depth of their experience but also because of their commitment to help us grow our tax controversy practice. The arrival of such a prestigious group validates what this firm has to offer in highly skilled professionals.”
Mr. Kleier, Mr. Messenger and Mr. Toman were formerly partners in the Tax Controversy Group at Preston Gates in San Francisco, where they counseled and litigated on behalf of businesses, individuals, and governments regarding franchise, income, sales, use, property, business, occupation, and other tax matters. They have worked on an extensive range of matters, including state tax issues associated with e‑commerce, telecommunications and other high technology issues, as well as regularly advising clients on strategies to minimize the impact of diverse and complex state taxes on business transactions in various industries.
Michael F. McCabe, a partner in Reed Smith’s Litigation Practice in San Francisco and a former office managing partner at Preston Gates, said “These three attorneys will allow Reed Smith to broaden the work the firm can do for many of our most valued clients, including those in the pharmaceutical and financial services industries. Their reputations as top tax controversy litigators are well-deserved and I look forward to working with such good friends and wonderful people again. As a team they comprise one of the nation’s leading tax controversy practices; Reed Smith is the perfect platform for them.”
Mr. Kleier said, “Although we were very successful at Preston Gates, we wanted a practice platform from which to deliver our services on a national level. We know Reed Smith’s geographical diversity will enable us to recruit top laterals in all markets to expand our group and the client base we can serve.
Mr. Kleier is a 1979 graduate of the University of Kentucky College of Law and a 1976 graduate of Thomas More College. After spending most of his early career at Morrison & Foerster, he worked briefly at Graham & James before joining a group that opened Preston Gates’ San Francisco Office in October 1998.
Serving most recently as Preston Gates’ firmwide practice group leader, Mr. Kleier’s expertise spans tax litigation and administrative resolution of tax controversies, with particular emphasis on California state tax cases. He has been involved in major federal and state tax controversies in the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Tax Court, and other federal and state courts as well as handling controversies at the administrative level before the IRS in nearly a dozen states. He represented Colgate-Palmolive Co. in a constitutional challenge to worldwide combined reporting before the US Supreme Court.
Mr. Kleier has taught California State Taxation at Golden Gate University and is a regular lecturer on criminal tax law at University of California’s Hastings College of the Law. He writes and lectures extensively on tax issues, including authoring articles on tax indemnity and purchase price allocations for Taxation for Lawyers.
Mr. Messenger is a 1973 graduate of the University of Idaho Law School and is admitted to practice in both California and Alaska. Prior to opening Preston Gates’ Anchorage office 25 years ago, he worked in the Alaska Attorney General’s office and the Alaska Department of Revenue.
Mr. Messenger’s practice has concentrated on state and local taxation and litigation, including many complex litigation matters related to oil and gas tax cases. He has been involved in major state and local tax controversies in federal and state courts, as well as many controversies at the state and local administrative levels.
Mr. Toman is a 1974 law school graduate of the University of West Los Angeles. He is a member of the State Bar Taxation Section Executive Committee. Immediately prior to joining Preston Gates, he served as Chief Counsel of the California Franchise Tax Board (FTB), where he directed the litigation, legislative, regulatory, administrative appeal, and settlement operations of the FTB’s Legal Branch.
Mr. Toman’s practice focuses on state corporate and personal income taxation. While at the FTB, he had oversight responsibility for the Board’s litigation and settlement functions and served as the lead counsel in major disputes. He is recognized nationally as a leading authority on the unitary concept and formula apportionment.
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Reed Smith LLP, a top-25 international law firm with 1,000 lawyers located in offices throughout the United States and Europe, represents Fortune 100 as well as mid-market and emerging companies. Clients include financial services firms, life sciences companies, health care providers, technology companies and entrepreneurs, power generators and suppliers, manufacturers, universities, non-profit organizations, real estate developers, and municipalities throughout the United States and in 40 countries. For more information, visit reedsmith.com.