M. John Way
John brings a unique perspective to tax and estate planning law. With a background working as Assistant Public Defender and later as a consultant in the corporate world, John approaches each client’s legal issue with the heart of an advocate and the mind of a businessman.
He advises private business owners throughout the entire business lifecycle from formation, operation and growth, through eventual transition out of the business, whether by sale, reorganization or liquidation. Tackling all phases of wealth preservation and estate planning, he creates customized strategies for the most complex situations. John also represents clients in their dealings with the IRS and state and local taxing authorities, including the Washington Department of Revenue.
John is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Washington’s School of Law, teaching in the Masters in Taxation program. He is the current Vice Chair of the American Bar Association Real Property Trust and Estate Section's Elder Law and Special Needs Planning Group, a Past President of the South Puget Sound Estate Planning Council, a Fellow with the American Bar Foundation and a former City Council Member.
- Advises family offices and business owners regarding multi-generational estate, business succession and tax planning.
- Works with families to mitigate tax and business costs resulting from incomplete or ineffective planning post-death and resolve conflicts.
- Worked with successful business owner to establish basic estate planning immediately while creating and implementing a succession plan that is diversifying his estate while providing for the ongoing success of his business.
- Advised business owner to obtain forensic accounting of records and valuation of company prior to going forward with certain management and financing agreements, successfully avoiding costly long-term involvement with predatory partners.
- Advised client regarding tax domicile and residency for income tax purposes, authored opinion letter finding substantial authority for establishment of domicile and residency in Washington, avoiding over $1 Million in Oregon income tax.
- Helped taxpayers with federal tax liability of over $1.5 Million reach settlement for $54,000.
Memberships & Awards
- American Bar Foundation
- American Bar Association, Real Property, Trusts and Estates Section, Vice Chair of the Elder Law and Special Needs Planning Group
- Estate Planning Council of Seattle
Resources & Ideas
Seminars & Speaking Engagements
- November 12, 2020
Estate & Business Succession Planning – Two Sides of the Same Coin, Kitsap Estate Planning Council Annual Meeting
January 30, 2020
Tips for Successful Estate and Succession Planning for Farmers and Ranchers, Washington Dairy Farmers Annual Meeting
December 3, 2019
Estate & Succession Planning, Ties to the Land presentation in conjunction with WSU Forestry Extension
September 28, 2019
Charitable Giving Strategies and Donor Advised Funds, Washington Planned Giving Council Annual Meeting
September 24, 2019
Charitable Giving Techniques in Estate Planning, Kitsap Estate Planning Council Annual Meeting
January 31, 2019
Successful Estate Planning Tips, Washington Cattlemen’s Organization Annual Meeting
November 8, 2018
Ties to the Land: Succession Planning for Landowners
August 11, 2018
Stop Living in a Fantasyland - Special Needs Planning Updates Attorneys Need to Know, American Bar Association’s Real Property, Trusts and Estate Section Spring Symposium
May 10, 2018 Orlando Florida
Construction Value: Avoiding Tax and Legal Missteps for Contractors
September 20, 2017
- January 7, 2021
- Estate Planning and Business Transition Issues Not to Overlook Before the Year-End (Updated 12/11/20)December 11, 2020
- Debt Forces County’s Hand—King County’s Debt Forces Property Owners to Make Second Half 2020 Property Tax Payments on Usual ScheduleOctober 12, 2020
- August 31, 2020
- March 30, 2020
- March 30, 2020
- January 16, 2018
- Tax Reform: What Does the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Mean for the Manufacturing, Distribution and Retail Industry?January 10, 2018
- January 10, 2018
- Tax Reform: What Does the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Mean for the Transportation, Ports and Maritime Industry?January 10, 2018
- January 10, 2018
- December 28, 2017
- September 29, 2017
- September 27, 2017
- University of Washington’s School of Law, Adjunct Professor
- South Puget Sound Estate Planning Council, Past President
- City Council, former member
- University of WashingtonLL.M., Taxation, 2005
- Tulane University Law SchoolJuris Doctor degree, 1995
- Northern Illinois UniversityBachelor of Arts degree, General Studies, 1991
U.S. Tax Court
U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington
Illinois State Courts
Oregon State Courts
Washington State Courts