Neil Birkhoff works to find solutions to tax-related legal needs for private clients, businesses, and nonprofits.
His practice includes federal, state, and local tax planning for individuals and businesses, and estate planning. He represents businesses and individuals before tax authorities and in court on tax matters.
Neil assists clients with a variety of employee benefit plans, ERISA, and benefit-related tax issues, including retirement plans and welfare plans, as well as fiduciary liability issues, and taxation of employee benefits. Neil also provides counsel regarding Section 457 plans for tax-exempt organizations and non-qualified deferred compensation plans. Neil can advise and assist employers with insured and self-insured health plans, life insurance plans, cafeteria plans, and dependent care plans.
Neil is a Fellow of the American College of Tax Counsel and a past chair of both the Virginia State Bar’s Section of Taxation and the Virginia Bar Association’s Section of Taxation. Prior to joining Woods Rogers in 1987, he was a trial attorney in the Tax Division of the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C.
Neil is a contributing author to several continuing legal education publications. He has been recognized for excellence in tax law and trusts & estates in Best Lawyers in America, by Virginia Super Lawyers, and in Virginia Business’s Legal Elite.
Neil is an adjunct professor of law at the Washington and Lee University School of Law, where he currently serves as Interim Director of the Tax Clinic and where he taught classes on nonprofit organizations and trusts and estates.
His community involvement includes service on the Carilion Clinic Foundation’s Professional Advisory Group and the advisory board for The Community Tax Law Project.
Corporations and Partnerships in Virginia (2021), Co-author
Eminent Domain – State & Federal (2018), Co-author
Limited Liability Companies in Virginia (2017), Co-author
Neil’s efforts to find solutions for his clients include:
- Assisting a charitable trust and individual philanthropist in structuring and implementing a $50 million structured gift to a higher education institution to support biomedical research. The charitable gift planning included obtaining favorable private letter rulings from the Internal Revenue Service.
- Representing federal and Virginia historic rehabilitation tax credit investors in projects including the rehabilitation and restoration of the former Roanoke YMCA building, the former Ponce de Leon Hotel building, and the Center in the Square building.
- Developing and successfully litigating a strict textualist interpretation of a local merchants capital tax situs rule, resulting in a favorable decision from the Supreme Court of Virginia that set precedent for interpreting state tax statutes, and saved the taxpayer several hundreds of thousands of dollars in local taxes each year on a forward basis.
- Developing and successfully litigating an interpretation of the “definite place of business” rule under Virginia’s business license tax regime. The Supreme Court of Virginia’s decision not only changed the way local commissioners of revenue apply the business license tax, but provided substantial tax savings on an on-going annual basis to the taxpayer.
- Using his knowledge and experience with Virginia’s sales and use tax statutes and regulations to successfully pursue an administrative appeal with the Virginia Department of Taxation that resulted in the full abatement of a six-figure use tax penalty involving the out-of-state purchase of an aircraft.
IRS Announces Another Compliance (Audit) Pilot Program. Oh joy!
June 6, 2022
Virginia Tax Department Focus on Worker Misclassification
August 23, 2021
Estate Planning After The Presidential Election
November 13, 2020
Clarifying CARES Act Rules for COVID-19 Plan Distributions and Loans
June 23, 2020
Like-Kind Property Exchanges Under the 2017 Tax Act
June 11, 2020
DOL Issues Final Regulations on Electronic Disclosure Safe Harbor for Retirement Plans
May 21, 2020
Cafeteria Plan Relief in Response to COVID-19 Pandemic (Coronavirus and the Law)
May 14, 2020
Employee Benefits Plans Timeframes Extended (Coronavirus and the Law)
May 7, 2020
The IRS Announces the Extension of More Tax Filing and Payment Deadlines (Coronavirus and the Law)
April 10, 2020
Employee Benefits Considerations for Employers During the COVID-19 Pandemic (Coronavirus and the Law)
April 8, 2020
Western Virginia Charitable Gift Planners | Tax Reform and Charitable Giving
May 4, 2018
Virginia State Bar CLE: Eminent Domain- State and Federal | Tax Aspects of Condemnation Awards
April 13, 2018
Seminars + Events
Tax Reform 2018: It is No Longer About Winners or Losers, but How We Implement Effective Change
October 24, 2018
37th Annual Labor & Employment Seminar Series
September 20 - October 17, 2018
Provisions of the New Tax Act Affecting Pass-Through Entities
February 7, 2018
Forty-four Woods Rogers Attorneys Recognized by Best Lawyers for 2022
August 19, 2021
Neil Birkhoff Will Serve on Carilion Clinic Foundation’s Professional Advisory Group
June 15, 2021
Sixteen Woods Rogers Attorneys Are 2021 Virginia Super Lawyers or Rising Stars
May 6, 2021
Neil Birkhoff Named as Interim Director of the Tax Clinic at W&L University Law School
April 7, 2021
31 Woods Rogers Attorneys Listed as “Legal Elite” and “Rising Stars”
November 30, 2020
Forty-one Woods Rogers Attorneys Recognized by The Best Lawyers in America for 2021
August 20, 2020
Neil Birkhoff to Serve as Interim Director of the Tax Clinic at W&L University Law School
July 2, 2020
Eighteen Woods Rogers Attorneys Selected as 2020 Virginia Super Lawyers
April 15, 2020
“Legal Elite” Ranking Lists 30 Woods Rogers Attorneys
December 10, 2019
Thirty-nine Woods Rogers Attorneys Recognized by The Best Lawyers in America for 2020
August 16, 2019
Six Woods Rogers Attorneys Named a Roanoke Lawyer of the Year
August 15, 2019
Twenty-two Woods Rogers Attorneys Named 2019 Virginia Super Lawyers
April 11, 2019
Thirty-nine Woods Rogers Attorneys Recognized by The Best Lawyers in America
August 16, 2018
Twenty-three Woods Rogers attorneys awarded honors by Virginia Super Lawyers Magazine
April 20, 2018
Six Woods Rogers Attorneys Are a Roanoke Lawyer of the Year As Recognized by Best Lawyers in America
August 15, 2017
Thirty-six Woods Rogers Attorneys Are Recognized by Best Lawyers in America
August 15, 2017
Twenty-one Woods Rogers attorneys awarded honors by Virginia Super Lawyers Magazine
May 1, 2017
Thirty Woods Rogers Attorneys Recognized as 2017 The Best Lawyers in America
August 16, 2016
Twenty-two Woods Rogers Attorneys Awarded Honors by Virginia Super Lawyers Magazine
April 7, 2016
Thirty Woods Rogers Attorneys Recognized as 2016 Best Lawyers in America
August 19, 2015
Best Lawyers Names Woods Rogers Attorneys as “Lawyer of the Year” in Roanoke, Va.
August 18, 2015
Tax and Estate Planning Group Chair Assumes Leadership Role at Washington & Lee University’s Law School Tax Clinic
August 13, 2015
Twenty-Two Woods Rogers Attorneys Awarded Honors by Virginia Super Lawyers Magazine
April 9, 2015
Thirty-four Woods Rogers Attorneys Recognized as 2015 Best Lawyers in America
August 22, 2014
20 Woods Rogers Attorneys Recognized as Virginia Super Lawyers or Rising Stars
July 10, 2014
33 Attorneys Named Best Lawyers in America 2014
August 15, 2013