Chambers and Partners has once again recognized McGuireWoods as one of the top private wealth services firms in the United States in its prestigious High Net Worth Guide. The firm earned a nationwide ranking — as it has each year since the guide’s 2016 launch — and ratings for the District of Columbia, Virginia and North Carolina.
Chambers also singled out 10 McGuireWoods lawyers for individual honors. Partners Charles D. “Skip” Fox IV and John B. O’Grady were ranked as notable practitioners in the Eastern United States and in Virginia. Partners Michael Barker, Ben Candland, Jean Gordon Carter, Andrea C. Chomakos, E. Graham McGoogan Jr., Michele McKinnon, William Sanderson and Gino Zaccardelli earned state rankings in the guide.
Carter, Fox and McKinnon received Band 1 state rankings, the highest Chambers awards, and the firm earned Band 1 state rankings for Virginia and North Carolina.
McGuireWoods’ private wealth lawyers advise high-net-worth clients, nonprofits, fiduciaries and businesses in all aspects of tax and wealth planning and are influential voices in shaping U.S. tax policy.
“These rankings reflect our private wealth team’s national reputation as trusted advisers and influential voices on state and federal tax policy,” said Gerald V. Thomas II, chair of the firm’s Tax & Employee Benefits Department.
In interviews with Chambers researchers, clients and peers lauded the firm’s lawyers for their capabilities, with one calling McGuireWoods “a real strong national player with some real strong national practitioners.”
Fox was described as “perhaps the leading trust and estate attorney in the country” and O’Grady was praised as a “very knowledgeable … excellent adviser.”
Clients lauded Barker as a rising star in the private wealth field, noting he is “a very good listener, very thoughtful about how his work will affect future generations, and good at talking to lay people.”
Candland, who advises individuals, institutions and corporate trustees on estate planning and administration, was hailed as “a brilliant communicator who can distill anything for any audience.”
Carter is recognized as one of North Carolina’s top tax and estate planning lawyers. “She has a deep knowledge of the law, an ability to explain in layman’s terms,” a client said. “She’s kind, timely in responses, and generous with her own time.”
Chomakos co-chairs the firm’s fiduciary litigation group. “Her interactions with the clients give them confidence, and her timeliness is excellent,” one client said. “She’s outstanding.”
McGoogan was singled out as “very respected” for handing complex and high-value private wealth matters. He practices in the areas of tax services, as well as trust and estate planning and administration.
McKinnon, leader of the firm’s nonprofit and tax-exempt organizations team, advises charities, colleges, large private foundations and charitable trusts on federal tax and governance matters. “She’s the best authority in the Commonwealth of Virginia in the philanthropic field,” one client said. “She’s direct, sensible and insightful.”
Sanderson co-leads the private wealth services group and advises individuals and families on estate and business planning matters. “He’s always calm but gets right to the issues, and is very, very tenacious,” a private wealth professional told Chambers. “Our client absolutely loves him.”
Zaccardelli focuses his practice on complex matters for high net worth individuals and families. He advises on tax issues, estate planning, probate matters and family business transfers, Chambers noted.