Robert B. Ravenelle

As head of Pierce Atwood's Tax practice, Rob Ravenelle has extensive experience in the planning, negotiation, and tax structuring for mergers and acquisitions. He works closely with members of our Business Practice Group to ensure that clients obtain the most economic and tax efficient transaction results possible. Rob's prior experience practicing as a Certified Public Accountant brings unique skills that enhance the value of our services in deal transactions, from mergers to renewable energy tax equity financing to succession planning of closely held businesses.

In addition to his M&A expertise, Rob is an expert in non-qualified deferred compensation arrangements, frequently counseling on and drafting cutting edge plans for both closely held and public clients. Rob also regularly provides advice to tax-exempt organizations including formation, compliance, private investment and related issues.

While in law school, Rob was recruited by KPMG (Peat Marwick) to work in their Portland, Maine tax office where he became certified as a public accountant. During his ten years of service in public accounting, he acquired extensive experience in analyzing the tax impacts of deal transactions, tax return preparation, and IRS controversy resolution. In 1997, he brought these skills along to Pierce Atwood, where he has brought them to bear on scores of transactions of all types.

Honors & Distinctions
  • Named The Best Lawyers in America® "Lawyer of the Year" for Tax Law in Maine (2023)
  • Recognized by The Best Lawyers in America® for Tax Law (2008-present)
Professional Activities
  • Adjunct Professor of Tax Law at the University of Maine School of Law
  • Certified Public Accountant
Civic Activities
  • Board member and former Chairman of the Board of Preble Street Resource Center
  • Board member, Portland Nordic Ski Club (Middle School)

Practice Areas

Representative Experience
  • Planned, negotiated and documented the complex transition of a $20 million family business from the second generation to the third generation
  • Provided transaction tax planning, structure and non-qualified deferred compensation advise on the sale of a closely held food manufacturer to a private buyer
Representative Experience
  • Provided tax structure and guidance in a unique voluntary supervisory conversion of a mutual savings bank including the issuance of a tax opinion letter
  • Advised on complex partnership tax issues and deal structure for buyout of a partner in food manufacturing industry involving over $100 million transaction value
  • Obtained a Private Letter Ruling from the IRS where the IRS agreed to disregard a corporate financing subsidiary of a corporate client on the basis of substance over form
  • Guided a business incubator to obtaining a favorable tax-exemption letter from the IRS