Christiana M. Lazo
Christiana’s practice consists of representing ultra-high net worth individuals, their family offices, and closely held businesses in developing and implementing sophisticated domestic and international tax and estate plans. She has significant experience counseling global clients on inbound and outbound planning, particularly advising families with members in multiple jurisdictions on wealth transfers and on tax-efficient investment and business ownership structures.
In addition to working closely with global clients, Christiana advises domestic clients on estate planning, complex estate settlements and sophisticated lifetime gifting programs. She draws on her depth of experience working with multi-generational families to craft transactions that meet the unique needs and goals of each client. Christiana combines her deep knowledge of estate planning techniques with a strong sense of empathy that allows her to recognize sensitive family issues that may need to be taken into account.
As a thought leader in her field, Christiana is an adjunct professor at the New York University School of Law, where she teaches a course on generation-skipping transfer tax. She is also a frequent speaker and author on estate planning topics.
- Works with clients in developing complex estate plans for wealth transfers using techniques including sophisticated lifetime gifting programs, installment sales, GRAT programs and split-interest trusts and modernization of estate plans through modifications of irrevocable trust agreements.
- Regularly represents global individuals to structure U.S. income and transfer tax-efficient plans for assets.
- Advises domestic and foreign clients on ownership and transfer structures for closely held companies.
- Provides tax structuring advice around closely held foreign companies, particularly in connection to changes in tax law under 2017 tax reform.
- Advises families with existing plans on methods of modernizing, revising or unwinding estate plans.
- Counsels individuals and families on charitable giving techniques and represents tax-exempt organizations, including both private foundations and public charities, regarding governance and tax matters.
- Author, “Lessons Learned from the AG’s Suit Against the Trump Foundation,” The New York Law Journal (September 7, 2018)
- Author, “US Tax Reform Affecting Estate Planning for NRAs Holding US Situs Assets: Loss of the 30-Day Rule for CFCs,” IBA Digital Content Taxes Committee Newsletter (August 30, 2018)
- Author, “Adapt Globally Some Strategies for Domestic Fund Managers,” Estate Planning Journal (WG&L) (September 2018)
- Co-author, “Celebrity Estate Planning: Misfires of the Rich and Famous,” Probate & Property Magazine Vol. 32 No. 4 (July/August 2018)
- Author, “Tax Considerations in Estate Planning,” contributing attorney to New York Business and Commercial Lexis Practice Advisor® Series
- Co-author, “The United States Chapter of The Global Guide to Trusts,” editor Jean-Marc Tirard, Academy & Finance (2017)
- Co-author, “Comments submitted to Internal Revenue Service on Proposed Treasury Regulations and Temporary Regulations Under IRC Sections 1014 and 6035 Regarding Basis Consistency,” American Bar Association Section of Real Property, Trust & Estate Law (June 23, 2016)
- Panelist, Calculating Foreign Trust DNI and UNI: Avoiding Throwback Tax on Undistributed Net Income, Strafford Publications, October 31, 2018
- Panelist, Tax Planning under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, New York City Bar Center for CLE Programs, October 18, 2018
- Panelist, Estate Planning: Misfires of the Rich and Famous, New York City Bar Association, City Bar Center for CLE, August 8, 2018
- Panelist, Wealth Planning in Multi-Jurisdictional and Cross Border Context, 2018 MLWM International Symposium, May 17, 2018
- Speaker, International Market Opportunities, Part I: The New Frontier, 2018 AALU Annual Meeting, April 29, 2018
- Panelist, Avoiding Crummey Power Mistakes in Drafting Trust Documents, Strafford Publications, January 31, 2018
- Panelist, IRC 645 Election: Estate Planning for Qualified Revocable Trusts in Taxable Estates, Strafford Publications, January 16, 2018
- Presenter, Estate Basis Consistency Rules & Reporting Requirements: The Basis of (Almost) Consistently Fun Considerations for Fiduciaries, Beneficiaries & Their Advisers, for MyLawCLE and Wolters Kluwer, November 6, 2017
- Panelist, IRC 2513 Gift-Splitting Rules: Identifying Gifts Requiring Non-Pro Rata Allocations, Strafford Publications, September 13, 2017
- Panelist, IRC 645 Elections for Qualified Revocable Trusts: Mastering the DNI Separate Share Calculation Rules, Strafford Publications, June 8, 2017
- Panelist, Estate Planning: Misfires of the Rich and Famous, New York City Bar Association, City Bar Center for CLE, July 27, 2017
- Panelist, Repairing Gift Tax and GST Return Reporting Mistakes, Strafford Publications, May 15, 2017
- Panelist, Estate Basis Consistency Rules for Fiduciaries: Navigating Reporting Requirements and Distribution Strategies, Strafford Publications, February 7, 2017
- Panelist, Avoiding Crummey Power Mistakes in Drafting Trust Documents, Strafford Publications, October 4, 2016
- Presenter, “Charitable Lead Trusts: The 'Other' Hurdles,” PPGGNY - Planned Giving Day 2015, May 28, 2015, New York, New York