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Mark D. Olson

Partner T: 302.888.5211 F: 302.571.1750
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Mark D. Olson  has practiced for more than 35 years in the areas of federal, state and local taxation, and estate planning and administration. Estate planning and transfer tax planning are major components of Mark’s practice. He assists clients in developing estate plans, including strategies utilizing trusts and limited liability companies for lifetime gifting and other wealth transfers, life insurance planning, and valuation techniques. His experience includes trust decanting, asset protection planning, and tax-favored strategies such as Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts, Qualified Personal Residence Trusts, and trusts with charitable gift components.

Mark’s experience includes the administration of complex, multi-jurisdictional estates, illiquid estates, and estates including assets which are difficult to value. Mark has represented clients in Court of Chancery litigation in contested will cases, elective share proceedings, and other estate and property disputes.

The taxation of business entities such as limited liability companies, corporations and S corporations and their owners is a significant portion of Mark’s practice. In addition to tax planning, he assists clients in entity formation, reorganization, and dissolution matters. Mark advises real property investors and developers concerning like-kind exchanges, tax-efficient ownership structures, and tax planning for property development and disposition, real property syndications, joint ventures and private placements, including tax issues, and securities laws compliance.

Mark speaks frequently to professional groups on issues of like-kind exchanges of real property and personal property, and state tax issues, including gross receipts taxes, realty transfer taxes, and the taxation of trusts and their beneficiaries.

Experience

  • Counseling high net worth clients and developing wealth transfer strategies to take advantage of increases in the gift and estate tax exclusions available in 2011 and 2012
  • Counseling financial institutions and other clients in connection with modification of existing trusts, decanting and changes of trust situs
  • Implementing successful strategies for tax-advantaged intra-family transfers of real property and closely held business interests
  • Counseling clients on the uses of Delaware trusts as part of multi-generational wealth transfer planning and in connection with asset protection strategies
  • Advising heirs and developing family settlement plans for equitable distribution of fractional interests in real property and other illiquid assets
  • Advising closely held business owners in implementing S corporation elections with Qualified Subchapter S Trusts and Electing Small Business Trusts as stockholders
  • Successfully defending estate tax and gift tax return examinations

Professional Affiliations

Delaware State Bar Association

  • Tax Section, Member, Past Chair
  • Trusts and Estates Section

American Bar Association

  • Section of Taxation
  • Real Property, Probate, Trust and Estate Law Section

Community Affiliations

Estate Planning Council of Delaware
Meeting Ground, Inc., Board of Directors, 2009 – 2012
New Castle Presbytery of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Trustee, 1999 – 2005, 2009 – Present

Practice areas

Honors

Best Lawyers®, 2011-2017

Best Lawyers®, 2016 "Lawyer of the Year" for Tax Law

Martindale-Hubbell, AV Rating

Admissions

Delaware, 1976

U.S. Tax Court

U.S. Supreme Court

Education

University of Pennsylvania Law School, J.D., 1976

State University of New York at Binghamton, B.A., 1973