Jon R. Stefanik

Business Practice Group Leader

  • Areas of Practice

    • Business
    • Mergers & Acquisitions
    • Taxation
    • Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation

I am a business attorney with a unique tax background. I represent privately-held companies, individual business owners and emerging growth companies. My clients seek my counsel on a wide range of general business matters, but my focus is in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance and business succession planning.


I work closely with my clients to understand the issues that are important to them, and those that aren’t, so that I am able to maximize returns on my drafting and negotiating efforts. Because tax issues are pervasive in virtually all business endeavors, clients value my tax experience and training, as I am uniquely positioned to assess tax issues and opportunities at every step of the agreement drafting and negotiation process.


No matter the business need or issue, I am committed to my clients’ success. I keep the best interests of my clients at the forefront when approaching the various legal issues that are so prevalent in today’s business world.


  • Experience
      • Focuses practice on general business and corporate matters, including related tax planning and consulting
      • Tax practice experience includes analysis of a wide range of tax issues, including issues related to LLC and partnership taxation, estate and gift taxation, corporate taxation and state and local taxation
      • Business practice experience includes assistance with entity formations, start-up ventures, software licensing arrangements, contract drafting and buy and sell-side mergers & acquisitions representation
      • Represented early stage software client in receiving multi-million dollar Series A and Series B preferred equity investments.
      • Represented start-up company in $3M convertible debt bridge financing round.
      • Regularly advise wealth management client in multi-million dollar strategic asset acquisitions.
      • Regularly advise public accounting firm client in multi-million dollar strategic asset acquisitions.
      • Regularly advise national disaster restoration business client in roll-up acquisitions throughout the US.
      • Regularly advise restaurant franchisee client in acquisition of additional restaurant locations, including a 37-store acquisition in 2017.
      • Represented client in tax-free split up of professional services corporation into two separate corporations to facilitate a split of conflicting shareholder groups.
      • Represented client in acquisition of software company competitor via asset purchase.
      • Regularly represent clients in the sale of their businesses to strategic and financial purchasers.
      • Represented client in purchase of automobile dealership via asset purchase.
      • Regularly advise national real estate group in structuring capital stack and distribution waterfall for each LLC formed to acquire property.
      • Represented client in sale of right to occupy restaurant space in Las Vegas casino under Management Agreement.
      • Represented family office client in the acquisition of a controlling interest in a global restaurant concept.
      • Represented S corporation client in contribution of appreciated assets to a newly-formed LLC co-owned by an institutional investor, with a simultaneous partially liquidating distribution to S corporation. Structured as a part-sale/part-contribution resulting in significant tax deferral.
      • Restructured an S corporation client prior to sale so that unwanted assets could be distributed tax-free and buyer could purchase stock while receiving asset sale treatment for tax purposes.
      • Represented a management group in the sale of their investment in a private LLC on a favorable tax basis while reinvesting in the successor company on a tax-free basis.
      • Regularly advise clients in the negotiation of various commercial contracts, including Distribution Agreements, License Agreements, Non-Disclosure Agreements, and Joint Development Agreements.
  • Education & Admissions
      • The University of Akron School of Law, Akron, Ohio (J.D., summa cum laude, 2007)
      • Co-Valedictorian
      • The University of Akron, Akron, Ohio (Master of Taxation, 2007)
      • The University of Akron, Akron, Ohio (B.S., summa cum laude, 2004)
    • Admissions
      • Ohio Bar
      • U.S. Tax Court
  • Awards & Honors
      • Named Best Lawyers in America® ‘Lawyer of the Year’ (2019 & 2021-2023)
      • Selected for inclusion in Best Lawyers in America® (2017-2021)
      • Recipient: 30 for the Future Award by the Greater Akron Chamber of Commerce (2011)
      • Selected for inclusion in Ohio’s Super Lawyers® (2022), as voted by his peers
      • Selected for inclusion in Ohio’s Super Lawyers® - Rising Stars™ (2011-2013,2016-2017), as voted by his peers
      • Recipient: University of Akron Outstanding Adjunct Faculty Award (2015)
      • Recipient: Ernest Karam Award for Academic Excellence
      • Recipient: Beta Gamma Sigma Outstanding Graduate Student Award
  • Professional & Civic Involvement
      • Board Member: American Red Cross - Greater Akron and Mahoning Valley Chapter
      • Board Member and Past President: Akron Roundtable
      • Board Member and Past President: Akron Tax Club
      • Member: Leadership Akron, Class XXVII
      Past Affiliations
      • Board Member: ACCESS Inc.
      • Board Member: Torchbearers
      • Chair: Akron Bar Association – University of Akron Liaison Committee
      • Board Member: Project Learn of Summit County
    • Associations
      • Member: Akron Bar Association
      • Member: American Bar Association, Taxation and Business Law Sections
      • Member: Ohio State Bar Association, Taxation Committee
  • Presentations & Publications
    • <strong>Presentations:</strong> <ul> <li>"Liability Sharing and Disguised Sales: The Proposed Regulations," University of Akron National Tax Conference (2014)</li> <li>"Partnership Allocations,” University of Akron National Tax Conference (2012)</li> <li>"Recourse and Nonrecourse Liability in Partnership Agreements,” Stafford Legal Webinars (2012)</li> <li>“Federal Income Tax Developments,” Akron Tax Club (2011)</li> <li>"Choice of Entity and Federal Taxation Issues," Akron Global Business Accelerator (2010)</li> <li>"Taxation of Carried and Profits Interests," University of Akron National Tax Conference (2010)</li> <li>“Transaction Structuring: Avoiding Potential Pitfalls," Akron Tax Club (2010)</li> <li>“Selected Issues in Private Equity Acquisitions: A Case Study,” Akron Tax Club (2008)</li> </ul> <strong>Publications:</strong> <ul> <li>"<a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Don't Forget the Buy/Sell Agreement</a>," <em>Crain's Cleveland Business Blog</em> (2015)</li> <li>"Allocating Recourse and Nonrecourse Liabilities under Subchapter K,” <em>Journal of Taxation and Regulation of Financial Institutions</em> (2013)</li> <li>“Fisher and Price: The End of Annual Exclusion Gifts of FLP Interests, or Mere Child’s Play?,” <em>Taxes- The Tax Magazine® </em>(2011)</li> <li>“Joint Committee Refund Review: Twelve Questions to Consider,” <em>Journal of Tax Practice and Procedure </em>(2008)</li> <li>“Crew 4 You, Inc. v. Wilkins: The Ohio Supreme Court Misapplies Statute and Precedent to Eliminate the Resale Exception to Sales of Employment Services,” <em>Akron Tax Journal </em>(2007)</li> </ul>