Main Menu
James Brown, Ivins, Phillips & Barker, Chartered Photo

James E. Brown


Jamie advises on federal income tax planning and compliance matters, and represents clients in tax controversies and litigation.


Jamie's representations have involved the taxation of financial instruments, the timing of income and deductions, international issues, deductions for worthless investments, the substance-over-form and economic substance doctrines, civil tax penalties, and other areas of tax law.   

From 2006 to 2013, Jamie was a trial attorney with the Tax Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, where he was lead counsel for the government in over 100 civil tax cases, and he received two Outstanding Attorney awards. Jamie has served as Chair and Vice-Chair of the D.C. Bar Tax Audits and Litigation Committee, and has been named to The Best Lawyers in America for Tax Law. 


Harvard Law School, 2003, J.D. 

University of St. Andrews, 2000, M.A.

Bar & Court Admissions

District of Columbia (2005)

Massachusetts (inactive) (2004)

U.S. Tax Court

U.S. Court of Federal Claims

U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia

U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Sixth and Eleventh Circuits

U.S. Supreme Court

Memberships & Affiliations

D.C. Bar, Taxation Community: Committee on Tax Audits and Litigation, Chair (2016-2018); Steering Committee member (2017-2020); Community Outreach Coordinator (2017-2022)

American Bar Association, Section of Taxation, Transfer Pricing Committee, Member Federal Bar Association, Section on Taxation, Member


Representative Matters

Advised corporation on U.S. tax treatment of renewable energy certificates and virtual power purchase agreements.

Advised corporation on U.S. tax treatment of indefeasible right of use agreements.

Lead counsel for executive in arbitration proceeding against former employer. Matter settled in discovery.

Secured reversal of $2 million in information return penalties assessed by IRS against energy company.

Represented manufacturing company in Court of Federal Claims litigation. Case settled.

Represented insurance marketing company in Tax Court worker classification (employee/independent contractor) litigation in which IRS proposed to assess $3.6 million in additional payroll taxes. IRS conceded in response to motion for summary judgment.

Represented private equity fund in TEFRA partnership audit contesting $11 million in bad debt deductions. IRS made no adjustments.

Represented U.S. subsidiary in transfer pricing audit proposing $4 million adjustment to prices charged by foreign parent company for products imported into the U.S. IRS made no adjustments.

Represented investment management company in IRS audit of international tax and transfer pricing issues raised by transfer of portfolio to Irish company. IRS made no adjustments.

Co-counsel in Tax Court trial involving economics of publishing industry.

Drafted Tax Court petition contesting alleged $3.8 million deficiency based on IRS's finding that merger did not qualify as tax-free reorganization, and therefore surviving entity did not succeed to net operating losses of over $33 million. IRS conceded in answer to petition.

Co-authored taxpayers' successful briefs in Wright v. Comm'r, 809 F.3d 877 (6th Cir. 2016). Court of Appeals held that under plain meaning of Internal Revenue Code, mark-to-market tax accounting applies to over-the-counter options on major foreign currencies.

Drafted memorandum for IRS auditors regarding $30 million issue arising from interaction between foreign sales corporation ("FSC") regime and alternative minimum tax ("AMT"). IRS made no adjustments.

News & Events


Speeches & Presentations

  • “Corporate AMT – Introduction and Hot Topics,” Tax Executives Institute, 77th Annual Conference, October 24, 2022
  • "Managing Complex IRS Audits of Midsize Business Taxpayers,", March 11, 2020
  • “The Attorney-Client Privilege and Related Considerations in M&A Transactions,” Tax Executives Institute, Mergers & Acquisitions Seminar, November 19, 2019
  • “Planning an Effective Audit Management Strategy,” Tax Executives Institute, Audits & Appeals Seminar, May 20, 2019
  • "Practical Privilege Issues," Tax Executives Institute, Audits & Appeals Seminar, May 1, 2018



"Guide to Civil and Criminal Tax Penalties," Lexis Practice Advisor (August 2018)

"Tax Court Litigation: Basics," Lexis Practice Advisor (August 2018)

"Defending Transfer Pricing Audits Under the IRS's New Roadmap," Tax Notes (April 28, 2014)

"Coming Conflicts: Proposed U.S. Transfer Pricing Services Regulations and the Treatment of Intangibles," 6 Derivatives and Financial Instruments No. 5 (September 30, 2004)

Back to Page