Ninth Annual TFI Communications Technology Asset Valuation Conference - 2014


Peter Michaels


Law Office of Peter Michaels

Peter Michaels primarily represents businesses and exempt organizations in California state and local tax matters. Mr. Michaels has helped develop strategies for avoiding or minimizing property tax, sales/use tax, income/franchise tax, excise tax, utility tax, employment tax, business tax, and other fees, assessments, and levies for companies, individuals, and exempt organizations.

In addition to transactional tax planning and tax audit management, Mr. Michaels has successfully prosecuted tax litigation and appeals before trial and appellate courts, authorities at the state, county, and municipal levels, and has contributed to the development of countless state and local tax statutes, regulations, and ordinances.

Mr. Michaels has represented many industries in state and local tax matters, including wireline and wireless telephone companies, cable television systems, internet service providers, television and radio broadcasters, commercial (retail and office) real estate projects; airlines; railroads; hotels; hospitals; agricultural preserves; shopping centers; wholesale and retail grocers; residential and industrial developments; water companies; gas and electric utilities, as well as independent power producers; financial institutions; oil and gas companies; equipment lessors; high technology companies; natural gas and petroleum pipeline operators; newspaper and magazine publishers; billboard companies; maritime fleet and cruise ship operators; manufacturers; advertising agencies; construction contractors; and, commercial artists.

Mr. Michaels appears frequently before the California State Board of Equalization and has established strong professional relationships with elected Board members, executive management at the Board, and senior staff in key divisions of the Board. He also works closely with local boards of supervisors and assessment appeals boards, city councils, assessors, city managers and county administrative officers, tax collectors, and administrative boards throughout California. Additionally, Mr. Michaels advises many trade associations and professional societies in state and local tax matters.

Mr. Michaels successfully litigated Elk Hills Power v. State Board of Equalization, a landmark California Supreme Court decision on tax treatment of intangible assets and rights. He has authored many articles on state and local taxation, and often speaks publicly about and teaches courses on state and local taxation topics.

Mr. Michaels received undergraduate degrees in English and History from the University
of California at Berkeley (1972). He received a J.D. degree from the University of
California, Hastings College of the Law, where he was chair of the Moot Court Board
(1979). Before establishing a solo practice in 2007, Mr. Michaels was a business partner at Cooper, White & Cooper LLP in San Francisco for nearly two decades.
LOPM professional