Michael L. Fay - Verrill Dana LLP

Michael L. Fay

Listed in Best Lawyers since 1995

Michael Fay has over 35 years of experience representing high net worth clients and their families in the full range of their wealth management needs, providing expert counsel to venture capitalists, investment bankers, founders of significant private firms, senior officers of publicly owned companies, real estate developers, key executives of pre-IPO and other emerging firms, and families with significant accumulated capital.

Mr. Fay has been recognized annually by Worth magazine as one of the nation's "Top 100 Attorneys" based upon his outstanding legal expertise and exceptional client service, and he has also received Boston Magazine’s FIVE STAR Wealth Manager Award.  He is listed in Best Lawyers in America for Trusts and Estates and has been named a Massachusetts Super Lawyer from 2004 – 2012 in Estate Planning/Trust Law. 

Practice Focus

Wealth Management: 
advice on all aspects of wealth management, including tax-efficient transfer of wealth, creation of family controlled structures for long-term financial management and disposition of family assets, risk management, and implementation and oversight of family philanthropic endeavors. 

Trust & Estate Administration:  extensive experience coordinating estate and tax planning for wealthy individuals.

Representative Engagements

· Negotiated with IRS on terms of private letter ruling to ensure most favorable tax treatment of donor’s multi-billion dollar philanthropic gift to major US public charity.
· Structured and implemented plans—affecting hundreds of millions of dollars each—for public and private company CEOs to benefit both family members and philanthropic interests.
· Coordinated tax and wealth management strategies for multiple generations of several client families to benefit future generations for decades to come.
· Strategically planned early, tax efficient transfer of stock to children and grandchildren for key investor and executive at emerging technology company, well before eventual IPO or similar transaction.
· Enhanced development program of national not-for-profit organization on pro bono basis, including advising on sophisticated planned giving opportunities for members.    
· Implemented strategic solutions for executors of numerous significant estates, dealing with difficult issues relating to valuation, management and disposition of interests in significant closely held businesses, resolution of wide array of tax planning problems and opportunities, and discharge of fiduciary duties.

Publications and Presentations

Mr. Fay has been quoted on estate and tax planning and philanthropy in The Wall Street Journal, Time, Forbes, Financial Planning, US Trust Company of New York’s Business Advisor, Family Business Magazine, The Boston Business Journal and Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, as well as on National Public Radio.  He also presents on wealth management matters at industry seminars, including:

· “Thoughtful Wealth Planning for Children and Grandchildren,” speaker, Silver Bridge Institute, Boston, 2012.
· “Estate Planning for Significant Family Firms,” speaker, Family Firm Institute National Conference, Boston, 2004.
· “Planning for Reformation and Other Equitable Relief to Modify Charitable Trusts,” speaker, Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, Boston, 2003.

Professional and Community Involvement

Mr. Fay is a fellow and a member of the Charitable Planning Committee for the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel. He is also a member of Attorneys for Family Held Enterprises.

Mr. Fay is a member of the corporation of Partners HealthCare and an overseer of the Catholic Student Center at Dartmouth.  He has served as chairman of the Board of Professional Advisors of The Boston Foundation, as a member of the Executive Committee of the Dartmouth College Alumni Council, as secretary of the Dartmouth Educational Association and as secretary of the Dartmouth Alumni Association of Eastern Massachusetts.

Dartmouth CollegeBA 1971Harvard University Law SchoolJ.D. 1971Oxford University

Office Location

One Boston Place, Suite 1600
201 Washington Street
Boston, MA 02108-4407
United States

Practice Areas

Trusts and Estates (Family Businesses, Gift Planning, Nonprofit Organizations and Charitable Giving, Planning for Closely Held Businesses, Probate, Succession Planning, Tax, Trust Administration, Wealth Management)

Other Information

Gender: Male