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Experience List
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Admitted to Practice

  • Washington, 2013
  • District of Columbia, 2010
  • New York, 2009


  • French
  • German

David A. Lawson

David Lawson advises clients on matters related to tax exemption and charitable programs. His clients include hospitals and other health care organizations; universities and colleges; publicly traded corporations engaged in charitable giving and cause marketing; community, corporate, and family foundations; major operating charities and social service providers; and trade associations. David’s areas of expertise include acquisition and maintenance of tax-exempt status; corporate governance, including executive compensation issues; tax issues facing exempt health care organizations; rules governing private foundations and donor-advised funds; cause marketing and commercial co-venture regulation; and unrelated business income tax.

Representative Experience

Assist publicly traded companies with federal and 50-state compliance for online charitable sales promotions

Provide advice to publicly traded companies to ensure that major, long-term nationwide online charitable sales promotions are structured and operated such that they satisfy federal tax laws as well as all state laws governing such promotions, while minimizing overhead expense. (Ongoing)

Procedures for rebuttable presumption of reasonableness for tax exempt organizations

Assist boards of tax-exempt organizations, their compensation committees and human resources departments with designing and implementing procedures for approving executive compensation to create a “rebuttable presumption” of reasonableness under the federal tax law “excess benefit” rules in order to protect the organization, its executives and board members. (Ongoing)

Solve longstanding tax exemption issue for organization

Assist tax-exempt organization in successfully navigating unusual IRS and state-law processes to achieve permanent resolution of a unique, decades-old structural issue that jeopardized the organization’s tax-exempt status.

Tax advice with respect to major transactions involving tax-exempt organizations

Provide advice to executives and corporate counsel of major tax-exempt organizations on tax-exemption, federal tax, and state corporate law implications of restructuring transactions, mergers, asset sales, and spinoffs. (Ongoing)

Additional Qualifications

  • Associate, Caplin & Drysdale, Chartered, Washington, D.C., 2010-2012
  • Associate, Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP, Washington, D.C., 2008-2010

Professional & Community Activities

  • Tax Section, American Bar Association
  • Nonprofit Corporations Subcommittee, Business Law Section, Washington State Bar Association
  • Tax Section, Washington State Bar Association
  • King County Bar Association
  • Tax Section, District of Columbia Bar Association
  • Member of the Board of Directors, Wayfind