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Lisa M. Zarlenga

Partner, Steptoe

Lisa Zarlenga represents public and private companies on federal income taxation issues, with a focus on tax policy issues with respect to tax legislation and Treasury guidance as well as on corporate transactional and planning matters. Lisa serves as co-chair of Steptoe’s Tax Group and leads the firm’s tax policy practice. Drawing on her experience as Tax Legislative Counsel at the US Treasury Department’s Office of Tax Policy, Lisa marries substantive tax knowledge with strong relationships at Treasury and first-hand insights on the guidance and other processes at Treasury. She helps clients advocate for and resolve tax policy issues before the Treasury Department and IRS involving proposed and pending regulations and other administrative guidance, and before Congress involving legislation.

Lisa also advises clients on structuring tax-free and taxable acquisitions and dispositions, tax-free spin-offs, and internal restructurings, including providing opinion letters and seeking advance rulings from the IRS. She also assists clients in restructuring financially troubled businesses and advises on the special rules governing consolidated groups.

Lisa has combined her policy and transactional backgrounds to advise clients on tax issues relating to blockchain and digital currency. She advises clients on conducting digital currency transactions and conversions, token offerings, and different investment and entity structures. Her experience includes advising a coalition of the leading companies in the blockchain space that was engaging directly with the IRS and policymakers to develop workable policies at an industry-wide level.

As Tax Legislative Counsel at the Treasury Department, Lisa advised Treasury’s Assistant Secretary for Tax Policy on a broad range of domestic tax policy issues, including corporate, partnership, healthcare, tax-exempt organizations, energy, income tax accounting, estate and gift, and procedure and administration. She oversaw preparation of regulations and other administrative guidance implementing the Internal Revenue Code and the president’s annual revenue proposals in these areas.