Joshua Rubenstein

+12129407150

Joshua Rubenstein

National Chair Private Client  |  Katten Muchin Rosenman
JURISDICTION

United States (NY, NJ)

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Cross border planning
Litigation
Family office

Enhanced Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past 12 months?

A phenomenal victory that saved our client millions of dollars.

How did you get into private client?

I am the fourth generation Rubenstein to do private client work and was expected to join my father’s firm. However, I never wanted to be a lawyer. I was a Greek and Latin major at university. I finished my coursework for a doctorate in Latin. When it was time to pick my doctoral thesis, everything had already been done – you had to do something so microscopic that it was boring. Even though I realised I loved the Classics, I wanted to be practical – dissecting conjunctions wouldn’t help anybody! Then I wanted to be a lawyer, but not a trust and estates lawyer. Then I did a rotation to trust and estates and realised that I figured it out for myself, and I did want to do it, versus what was expected of me.

What advice would you give rising stars/new lawyers in the private client world?

While the nature of legal practice and being a lawyer is changing rapidly, the need for private client lawyers may be closer than most things to being a constant, since it is based upon greed or opportunity but rather upon mortality – for which at least at the moment there is no cure.

What is your favourite quote?

"Ain't no use worrying about the things you can do something about, 'cause there's always something you can do about them. Ain't no use worrying about the things ain't nothing you can do about, 'cause ain't nothing you can do about them.”

Do you have any outside interests or hobbies?

I love travelling, fine dining, music (and playing the piano and guitar).

When the restaurants reopen, where would you like to go?

Five Fields, London.

What do you think will be the biggest three challenges in your practice for the next 12 months?

1. When to resume in-person meetings. My answer is as soon as possible, but that depends upon everyone’s tolerance given the then state of affairs.
2. Crystal ball gazing. The world is in an unprecedented state of flux. Clients will want our best predictions, and wrong or right, they deserve them.
3. Client management. The easiest thing to do is exactly what our clients “say” they want. Because in reality they often don’t know what they really want, we will need to interpret their words, based upon our knowledge of them, and then help them achieve their actual as opposed to perceived goals. Tough job.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

I trusted my instincts at the start of my career, when I chose private client over transactional work. It was counter-trend, but it was what I cared about. I was stressed for a long time over whether or not I should not have become an investment banker. I would reassure my younger self to trust my instincts.

What are three top tips for dealing with your clients remotely?

1. Respond as soon as humanly possible, even if only to say that it will take more time to answer their question. Everyone is on tenterhooks and wants to know at least that you received their communication and are working on it.
2. Follow up proactively. Clients can be simultaneously exorcised about an issue but then in avoidance mode when it comes to responding.
3. Give practical advice. Clients want to benefit from our experience, not necessarily to know what saves the most taxes but more often what makes the most sense to do (which may or may not be the same thing).


Vlad Portnoy

+1 212 920 6371

Vlad Portnoy

Managing Partner  |  Law Offices of Vlad Portnoy, P.C.
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

New York
New Jersey

TOP AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Estate Planning
Probate and Administration of Estates (including cross-border)
Guardianships

RECOMMENDED SPECIALISMS

Private Investment Office

Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past 12 months?

Many exciting and challenging legal matters, including several highly coveted fiduciary Court appointments

What advice would you give rising stars/new lawyers in the private client world?

Listen to your clients. Understand not only their immediate needs but also their hopes, dreams and motivations. Always try to understand your client better as a human being before bringing it back to the legal or business talk.

What sets you apart from your peers?

Personal touch and care. Also, I am bilingual in English and Russian. Having received high school education in Russia, and having gone through graduate and law programs in the United States, I keenly understand the way both countries operate and the way their citizens think and behave. As court-certified interpreter, I can translate not only between the two languages but also convey ideas, so nothing is ever lost in translation.

What is your favourite quote?

"I can accept failure. But I can't accept not trying." - Michael Jordan


Warren Whitaker

+12122972468

Warren Whitaker

Partner  |  Day Pitney
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

United States
- New York
- New Jersey

TOP AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Personal and estate planning
Administration of estates and trusts
Succession planning

Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past 12 months?

Creating a US private trust company to act as trustee of a variety of US and offshore trusts for a cross-border family.

What advice would you give rising stars/new lawyers in the private client world?

The cross-border estate planning field holds enormous opportunities, with increasing globalisation, exchange of information and pressures for compliance.

What is your favourite quote?

"The fault is not in our stars, But in ourselves,” Julius Caesar.


Milan K. Patel

+19174393912

Milan K. Patel

Managing Partner  |  Anaford
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

United States (NY, NJ)

TOP AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Succession planning
Dispute resolution
Asset holding structures

Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past five years?

Filing a lawsuit against the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for violation of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA). For decades, the IRS has enjoyed what has been coined "tax exceptionalism," essentially meaning that agency actions on tax matters have avoided the same scrutiny to which other federal agencies have been subject under the APA. This lawsuit has the potential to change the practice of tax before the IRS and hold the IRS more accountable to it stakeholders, i.e., taxpayers.


Chris Nason

+1 628 218 3890

Chris Nason

Associate  |  McDermott Will & Emery
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

United States (NY, NJ)

TOP AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Personal and estate planning
Asset holding structures
Tax

Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past 12 months?

Working with individuals to create tailored, creative, tax-efficient succession plans that ensure that their assets transfer in the manner desired.

What advice would you give rising stars/new lawyers in the private client world?

Master domestic law first.

What is your favourite quote?

“The avoidance of taxes is the only intellectual pursuit that still carries any reward,” John Maynard Keynes.