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Bill Gust is a Senior Tax Partner with Gentry Locke. For more than 30 years, Bill has worked with closely held business owners relative to tax, employee benefits, corporate, and sophisticated estate planning matters. With his expertise in implementing business succession strategies, Bill has assisted in the successful transition of many privately held businesses, through sales, mergers and implementation of numerous ESOPs. A member of the American College of Trust and Estates Counsel, National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO) and the ESOP Association, Bill is a frequent lecturer on estate, business and tax planning as well as IRS and DOL compliance matters. As a part of his corporate practice, Bill also is active in the purchase and sale of fixed and rotary wing aircraft and regularly advises aircraft owners and aviation companies relative to aircraft purchase, leasing, and FAR Part 91 and Part 135 operations. He is consistently noted as a Virginia Super Lawyer in Tax Law, based on his high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement, and he earned a spot on the 2016 Best Lawyers in America list in Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law and Tax Law.

  • Years at Gentry Locke
  • What makes Gentry Locke different?

    The firm is an interesting amalgam of people. We are hard working. We have created a culture based on relationships and respect. Personally, I take great interest in my clients.

Education

  • Georgetown University Law Center, LL.M in Taxation, 1983
  • George Mason University School of Law, J.D. with distinction, 1981
  • Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, B.A. 1977

Experience

  • Successfully represented numerous companies in tax controversies involving coal excise tax disputes in United States District Court, United States Tax Court, and the Court of Federal Claims, resulting in substantial taxpayer recoveries
  • Represented numerous professional and other corporations in the design and implementation of qualified retirement plans and unqualified deferred compensation arrangements for key employees
  • Represented numerous corporations in the negotiation and implementation of mergers and other restructuring with transaction values in excess of $170 million
  • Serves as a Consultant of Corporate Capital Resources LLC, a wholly owned consulting subsidiary of Gentry Locke; established to provide fee-only business succession consulting services to owners of closely held companies
  • Represents numerous public and private companies in the adoption and operation of Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs) and subsequent stock purchases from public and private shareholders
  • Structured and implemented numerous acquisitions of turbine and rotary aircraft for U.S. and foreign companies; oversees compliance with FAR Part 91 and Part 135 operations
  • Represents many individuals and families in the structuring and implementation of sophisticated estate plans, designed to minimize the negative impact of state and federal taxes

Affiliations

  • Member, Roanoke-Blacksburg Regional Airport Commission (past Chairman)
  • Past Chair, Board of Governors, Trusts and Estates Section, Virginia State Bar
  • Fellow, American College of Trust and Estate Counsel
  • Member, Tax, Trusts and Estates, Health Care, Business Law Sections, Virginia State Bar
  • Member, Tax, Employee Benefits, Corporate Sections, American Bar Association
  • Member, Roanoke Valley Estate Planning Council
  • Member, ESOP Association; NCEO, Mid-Atlantic Chapter of ESOP Associations

Awards

  • Designated one of the Legal Elite by Virginia Business magazine for the area of Taxes/Estates/Trusts/Elder Law (2015-2016)
  • Named “2017 Roanoke Lawyer of the Year for Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law” by Best Lawyers in America
  • Peer Review Rated