Category: Announcements

Alyssa Gault Joins ALA

Alyssa Gault, Accounting Administrator for GSRP, has been accepted into membership in the Association of Legal Administrators (“ALA”). ALA is a professional organization that identifies and provides solutions to the most strategic and operational challenges law firms face today. Congratulations, Alyssa!

Cindy Grossman Elected Texas Bar Foundation Fellow

Cindy Grossman was elected as a Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation, in recognition for her exceptional professional accomplishments and dedication to the advancement of the Texas legal system. The Foundation funds projects to promote justice, ethics in the legal profession, education of the public, research, and victim services. Each year, the top one-third of one percent of Texas attorneys are invited to become Fellows. We congratulate Cindy on her achievement and commitment to professionalism and the community.

GSRP Adds New Offshore Tax Compliance Practice Area

The world is shrinking. Overseas connections are expanding. Families are spread across countries and continents. Many people in the United States (and U.S. citizens living abroad) are beneficiaries of foreign trusts or estates, and even more seek to invest overseas.

These trends have not gone unnoticed. Congress, the Internal Revenue Service, and other governmental agencies are ramping up enforcement efforts and getting results. The IRS hired about 3,300 new agents and tax compliance officers in 2009-2010 alone!

The regulatory landscape has changed dramatically since passage of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance provisions of the HIRE Act of 2010 (“FATCA”). And in recent years, the IRS has offered two separate voluntary disclosure programs to U.S. persons who had failed to fully report foreign assets.

GSRP is a law firm with in-house senior accounting expertise and a robust offshore and domestic tax compliance practice. The boutique nature of our firm allows us to deliver highly-personalized services. Our clients in the U.S. and abroad are much more than just files. Our technical expertise and proven processes, which utilize the latest technology, enable us to provide services that are reasonably-priced and timely-delivered.

Bob Chesner Launches ‘The Observation Deck’

COO and Finance and Insurance Director Bob Chesner recently launched his new blog, “The Observation Deck.” This exciting new venture will focus on the integration of politics, taxes, economics, financial planning, and insurance.

The linkage between these has never been greater and will only continue to converge over time.  The legislative and executive branches of the government will continue to have a greater influence on Wall Street and Main Street, and in turn, financial and tax planning. That will increase the need for appropriate risk management.  When new tax code and financial regulations are passed, they impact each of us in ways known, unknown and sometimes unintended. The Observation Deck will highlight both the obvious and not so obvious consequences.

Amy Quiñones Promoted to Insurance Coordinator

Congratulations to Amy Quiñones, who was promoted to GSRP’s Insurance Coordinator. In this role, Amy will be responsible for assisting in the design, implementation, and administration of offshore and domestic life insurance structures. She will gather the financial and medical information necessary to underwrite a policy, and work closely with the insurance brokers and carriers on underwriting and all post issuance matters.

Amy has been with GSRP since 2007. Prior to joining the firm, she was a financial analyst at Applied Materials, where she provided analysis on a variety of complex and diverse projects, created financial forecasts, and developed financial models.

Firm News from 2009

December
On December 3-4, Cindy Grossman presented at the 38th Annual Oklahoma Tax Institute hosted by the Oklahoma Society of CPAs.

September
Leslie Giordani and Derry Swanger were named to the Texas Super Lawyers list for 2010, as published by Super Lawyers magazine. Super Lawyers represent the top 5% of lawyers in the state, as determined by Law & Politics magazine. Each attorney is featured in the Texas Super Lawyers Edition in the October issue of Texas Monthly magazine.

July
Leslie Giordani, Derry Swanger, and Michael Ripp were selected for inclusion in Best Lawyers in America © 2010 by Woodward White, Inc.

Peggy Ugent presented “U.S. Tax and Information Reporting for Foreign Trust and Entity Structures” at the American Institute of CPAs Advanced Estate Planning Conference in San Diego. The conference was held July 20-22. 

Cindy Grossman was named to the Texas Rising Stars list for 2009, as published by Super Lawyers magazine. This is Cindy’s first year to be selected to the Rising Stars list, which represents the top 2.5% of up-and-coming lawyers in the State of Texas, as determined by Law & Politics magazine.

April
Partners Leslie Giordani, Derry Swanger, Michael Ripp, and Steve Phillips, as well as senior directors Bob Chesner and Peggy Ugent, continue their practice as a new firm–Giordani, Swanger, Ripp & Phillips, LLP. GSRP will continue to offer superb client service while providing top-rate legal advice in a broad range of transactional practice areas.

Firm News from 2008

November
Leslie Giordani was named to the Super Lawyer list by Law & Politics magazine in the corporate counsel edition. She was featured in a special issue distributed to more than 20,000 corporate counsel and 5,000 CEOs of the top private and publicly held companies in the country.

October
Michael Ripp, Mari Reed, and Cindy Grossman were named to the Texas Rising Star list for 2008, as published by Super Lawyers magazine. Rising Stars represent the top 2.5% of up-and-coming lawyers in Texas, as determined by Law & Politics magazine.

Bob Chesner presented “Asset Protection Tools and Techniques,”at the 2008 McGehee Group Annual Advisors Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. The conference was held October 19-21.

Leslie Giordani and Derry Swanger were named to the Texas Super Lawyers list for 2009, as published by Super Lawyers magazine. Super Lawyers represent the top 5% of lawyers in the state, as determined by Law & Politics magazine. Each attorney is featured in the Texas Super Lawyers Edition in the October issue of Texas Monthly magazine.

September
Leslie Giordani, Derry Swanger, Michael Ripp, and Steve Phillips were selected for inclusion in Best Lawyers in America© 2009 and are featured in a special section of American Lawyer magazine, published in December.

July
Leslie Giordani, Bob Chesner, and Michael Ripp were quoted by Lewis Schiff in his article “A Special Kind of Life Insurance,” in Investment Advisor Magazine.

Leslie Giordani and Bob Chesner presented “Private Placement Life Insurance in the Offshore Marketplace,” at the Eleventh Annual Advanced ALI-ABA Course of Study for Counselors to Foreign and U.S. Clients. The workshop was held July 31-August 1 in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

June 2008
Leslie Giordani and Bob Chesner presented “Gaining Preferential Tax Benefits On Your Investments Via Private Placement Life Insurance,”at the 15th Annual Family Office Forum in Chicago, Illinois. The conference was held June 18-20.

April
At Ballet Austin Foundation’s 10th anniversary dinner, Derry Swanger for his efforts as the foundation’s legal advisor. 

February
Bob Chesner chaired the IIR 6th Annual Event: Alternative Investing Through Life Insurance and Annuities in Miami, Florida, February 25-27. Leslie Giordani chaired the planning segment of the same conference and was a panelist in the session “Lessons from the Field: Protecting your Clients from Diversification Failures and Investor Control.” Michael Ripp also participated, sitting on a panel called “Solidify Market Understanding Through Comprehensive Q&A with Seasoned Managers.” 

Firm News from 2007

December
Cindy Grossman presented at the Oklahoma Society of CPAs 2007 Annual Meeting in Tulsa; her session was titled “The New Texas Franchise Tax: What Practitioners Need to Know.”

October
Michael Ripp, Mari Reed, and Cindy Grossman were named to the Texas Rising Star list for 2008, as published by Super Lawyers magazine. Rising Stars represent the top 2.5% of up-and-coming lawyers in the State of Texas, as determined by Law & Politics magazine.

Leslie Giordani and Derry Swanger are named to the Texas Super Lawyers list for 2008, as published by Super Lawyers magazine. Super Lawyers represent the top 5% of lawyers in Texas, as determined by Law & Politics magazine. Each attorney is featured in the Texas Super Lawyers Edition in the October issue of Texas Monthly magazine.

September
Leslie Giordani, Derry Swanger, Michael Ripp, and Steve Phillips were selected for inclusion in Best Lawyers in America© 2008. They foursome was featured in a special section of American Lawyer magazine (published November 2007).

June
We welcomed Stephen L. Phillips as a firm partner. Prior to joining us, he was a partner at Cantey Hanger, L.L.P., in Fort Worth, Texas. We also welcome new associate Cindy L. Grossman, who was also previously with Cantey Hanger, L.L.P.

Leslie Giordani and Bob Chesner presented “Deploying Alternative Investing Strategies via PPLI” at the 14th Annual Family Office Forum, in Chicago. The conference was held June 5-7.

February
Leslie Giordani and Bob Chesner co-chaired the IIR 5th Annual Event: Alternative Investing Through Life Insurance and Annuities. She also participated in a panel discussion called “Investor Control In Depth: Analysis with Case Examples.” The even was held February 26-27 in Miami. Michael Ripp presented at the same event–a session titled “Trend Focus: Are Annuities Gaining Ground on Life Insurance?”–and was a panelist for a session titled “Intermediate Course on Private Placement Life Insurance, Annuity, and Alternative Investment Products: Understanding the Tax, Product, and Regulatory Issues.“ 

We welcomed Bob Chesner as our new director of insurance; prior to joining the firm, Mr. Chesner was vice president of global affluent and corporate markets group at American International Group, Inc. and the chief marketing officer for AIG Life of Bermuda, Ltd.

Firm News from 2006

October
Leslie Giordani was quoted by Rachel Emma Silverman in her article “Insuring Against Hedge-Fund Taxes,” published in The Wall Street Journal.

Michael Ripp was named to the Texas Rising Star list for 2007, as published by Super Lawyers magazine. Rising Stars represent the top 2.5% of up-and-coming lawyers in the State of Texas, as determined by Law & Politics magazine.

Leslie Giordani and Derry Swanger were named to the Texas Super Lawyers list for 2007, as published by Super Lawyers magazine. Super Lawyers represent the top 5% of lawyers in the State of Texas, as determined by Law & Politics magazine. Each attorney is featured in the Texas Super Lawyers Edition in the October issue of Texas Monthly magazine.

September
Leslie Giordani and Derry Swanger were selected for inclusion in Best Lawyers in America© 2007. Each was featured in a special section of American Lawyer magazine, published in November.

Leslie Giordani presented “Selecting the Right Life Insurance in a Growing Menu of Options” at the 7th Annual Family Office Wealth Conference, held in Laguna Beach, California September 17-19.

June
Michael Ripp presented “Estate Planning Opportunities with Private Placement Life Insurance” at the Texas Bar Continuing Legal Education Conference Advanced Estate Planning and Probate Course. The conference was June 7-9 in Houston.

February
Leslie Giordani was quoted extensively by Gregory Taggart in his article “Gilt-Edged Insurance,” in Bloomberg’s Wealth Manager magazine.

Leslie Giordani chaired the IIR 4th Annual Event: Hedge Fund Investing Through Life Insurance and Annuities, and presented “The Role of Consultants and Advisors in Maximizing PPLI Performance and Client Satisfaction.” Michael Ripp presented two sessions at the same conference: “Part I: Life Insurance and Annuity Basics: Product, Tax, and Regulatory Issues” and “Updating and Clarifying the Legal Issues in the PPLI Marketplace.” The conference was held February 27-28 in Coconut Grove, Florida.

January
Leslie Giordani was quoted in an article entitled “Easing the Sting: Hedges and Taxes,” by freelance journalist Erin E. Arvedlund. It appeared in the January 2006 edition of Barron’s. She was also mentioned as an expert in the PPLI arena in Bloomberg’s new book, “Tax Aware Investment Management: The Essential Guide,” by Douglas S. Rogers, CFA. Her article, co-authored with Amy Jetel, “Investing in Hedge Funds Through Private Placement Life Insurance,” is listed as a source for the book.

Firm News from 2005

December
Michael Ripp presented two sessions at Financial Resource Associates’ 3rd Annual Event: Insurance & Annuity-Based Hedge Fund Investing Forum in New York: “Life Insurance and Annuity Basics: Product, Tax and Regulatory Issues” and “Back to Basics: Revisit the Fundamentals and Convergence of Hedge Funds, PPLI’s & Annuities.”

October
We proudly welcomed Michael H. Ripp as a new partner of the firm.

Leslie Giordani and Derry Swanger were named to the Texas Super Lawyers list for 2006, as published by Super Lawyers magazine. Super Lawyers represent the top 5% of lawyers in the state, as determined by Law & Politics magazine. Each attorney is featured in the Texas Super Lawyers Edition in the October issue of Texas Monthly. Michael Ripp was named to the Super Lawyers’ Texas Rising Star list for 2006. Rising Stars represent the top 2.5% of up-and-coming lawyers in Texas.

September
Leslie Giordani and Derry Swanger were selected for inclusion in Best Lawyers in America© 2006. Each partner is featured in a special section of tAmerican Lawyer magazine (November 2005).

August
Leslie Giordani presented at the Eighth Annual Advanced ALI-ABA Course of Study for Counselors to Foreign and US Clients – International Trust and Estate Planning Conference, which was held in Seattle, Washington, August 25-26. Her session was titled “Offshore Private Placement Life Insurance.”

June
We welcomed Mari M. Reed as a new associate attorney of the firm. Prior to joining, Ms. Reed was an associate in the Dallas office of Carrington, Coleman, Sloman & Blumenthal, L.L.P.

Leslie Giordani serves as chairman of IBC’s Third Annual Hedge Fund Investing through Life Insurance and Annuities, held June 13-14 in New York. She spoke at a session titled “Exploring the Benefits and Trade-offs of Onshore vs. Offshore Private Placement Life Insurance.” Michael Ripp also attended, leading the session “Legal Issues and Structures: What’s Going on in the PPLI Marketplace?”

February
Leslie Giordani presented at the FOX Wealth Advisor Conference, Understanding and Servicing the Ultra-Affluent Client, held in Coconut Grove, Florida February 9-11. Her presentation was called “Private Placement Life Insurance: Friend or Foe?” 

January
Leslie Giordani was selected as chairperson for IBC’s Third Annual National Event, Hedge Fund Investing through Life Insurance and Annuities.