James A. Schmidt, Esq., practices in the areas of business, tax and real estate law, representing individuals, companies, lenders and investors in their transactional matters.
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Announcer: Welcome to the Global Investors Podcast, a show that focuses on helping foreign investors enter the lucrative US real estate market. Host, Charles Carillo, combined decades of real estate investing experience with a professional background in international banking to interview experts in all areas of US real estate investing. Now here’s your host, Charles Carillo.
Charles: Welcome to another episode of the Global Investors Podcast. I’m your host Charles Carillo. Today we have Attorney James Schmidt. James worked as a CPA in both the audit and tax fields for eight years prior to practicing law and launching his law firm in 2008 in Tampa, Florida. He advises US and non-US individuals and entities and represents developers, buyers and sellers in both commercial and residential property transactions. He specialized in assisting clients that require both real estate advice and tax advice from the same counsel. So thank you so much for being on the show, James.
James: Hey, thank you Charles.
Charles: It’s great to have you here and it’s great to have a CPA and also an attorney in one, which is a kind of a unique thing to have. So I briefly touched on your background. Can you expand a little bit more on your background prior to starting your law firm currently?
James: Yeah, sure. It’s I’m really excitedto be on the show. Thank you for the invitation. I got I guess I should mention Dan Pepper. He’s a good friend and a client of mine and he’s, I understand he’s a good friend of yours and he put us in contact and he’s someone who is very knowledgeable here in West central Florida about the, you know, mostly the multifamily market, I think.
Charles: Yeah, Dan’s a great guy. He’s a great, a great property manager. I think his partner, Josh, is actually speaking at our January Tampa meetup for property management at our multifamily meetup there. So..
Charles: So Josh is a good guy as well, and I know both of them really well. And so thank you to Dan for the introduction. And so I guess a little bit about myself. I think anybody who’s in the practice of law brings some sort of personal experience with them and that personal experience really colors and you know, sort of colors what sort of attorney they are. You know, some people are drawn to the, drawn to the fight and they tend to, you know, get involved in the disputes and the litigation’s other people tend to be more you know, they were sort of, they’re drawn to the deal and they love trying to figure stuff out. And, you know, they tend to be sort of more of the transactional attorneys. You know, I kind of went out on a sort of you know, on a, in a different direction when I was in college and I studied accounting and I’m getting my CPA designation and all of that. And that proved to be very educational, and I enjoy accounting, but you know, for me it just didn’t have the, it wasn’t, it wasn’t that exciting for me. You know, and I’m really a deal guy and I drew, I grew up in an entrepreneurial household and I’m just going to be a transactional lawyer. And this was around 2000 and like sort of late 2007. And what I didn’t realize was that, you know, the world had turned itself upside down and there was a group of lawyers that had sort of broken off from, you know, some of the really top elite law firms in town and had started their own firm. And you know, we just sort of by matter of coincidence ended up meeting and they had some extra office space and you know we put it all together and they were, they kind of liked the idea of having an associate that they didn’t have to pay for. And I like the idea of not going to have to work for one of these big giant law firms and just getting beat up for a couple of years. When I consider the fact that 10 years have gone by since then. And there’s a lot of people in the market who, you know, they weren’t even in the market 10 or 11 or 12 years ago or they weren’t in the market 13 or 14 or 15 years ago when we were going through you know, the bubble and the big real estate run-up.
Charles: Yeah, it’s a, it’s definitely a different market than where you started, that’s for sure. And a lot of new players. That’s, that’s great to have that an awesome starting point there. And obviously they weren’t doing much real estate at that point and you’ve, you’ve changed into doing more transactional real estate along with your, your tax advising. So I want to transition to a couple of different questions that we have normally with new real estate investors specifically like, so if we’re doing, we’re coaching or we’re doing a meetup and we, real estate investors always come to us and it’s always, there’s never a black and white kind of a law thing, I guess when you’re talking to people, especially when it comes to like corporations and entities. So if a new real estate investor came to you, where would be the difference between LLC versus an S Corp? You know, if they’re just doing their own incorporation, why would one use one over the other?
James: You know, the way I look at it is it’s really this the sort of this trajectory. Okay. Whereas, you know, we started off, you know hundreds of years ago with this concept of an agent and a principal, right? You have the principal, you’d hire agent, your agent could go do things for you. And there was sort of some sort of connections there with liability and fiduciary duties. And you know, from there we kind of had this idea of a partnership, right? We have a bunch of people that come together and everybody sort of the agent of everybody else and any one person can create liability for everybody else. That’s a general partnership. And then after that we had the idea, a limited partnership, right? Where you’re going to have a bunch of people. You know, we’re still, we’re still all these concepts originated, you know, hundreds of years ago. You know, with the limited partnership, you’ve got the idea of, you know, a bunch of people who have really very limited risk and one person who has unlimited risk. Okay. And then, you know, kind of independent of that sort of completely separate, you know, we kind of lump all this stuff together right now, but really, totally separate from that. You know, later was this idea of a charter or a corporation. It was a completely different idea. And that idea was we’re going to get a bunch of people together, they’re all going to put some money in and no one’s going to have any liability for what happened. Okay. And you know, I’m, I’m from Wilmington, Delaware and I went to Weidner university law school and right on the side of the road there where Weidner is kind of situated between you know, sort of between Wilmington and a, you know, Philadelphia and gap Pennsylvania and Lancaster where there was a lot of, a lot of trade and a lot of travel sort of early in the history of the United States. There’s this big marker and it talks about the toll road that had been created. You know, they’re going to build this toll road. Well, the idea between behind the toll road was we were going to get a bunch of investors together. They were going to build a road from a to B, right? They are going to put up the capital, you know, people got to pay to use the road and you know, they were going to collect some kind of profit or some sort of return. But if there was an accident, none of those investors would be responsible. Yeah. But that’s the corporation. So you had these kind of two separate concepts, the partnership and the corporation. You know, before probably before I was born or you know, just before I was born, Congress made this thing called the S corporation, which was sort of a modification of the corporation. It was still a corporation, but for tax purposes, you know, the income and the gain would pass through. And then sort of in the late eighties, if I’ve got my dates right some energy investors in with Wyoming, they said, well, we want to create a completely new thing. Okay. Where it really behaves like a partnership. Okay. In terms of its tax treatment and its flexibility and sort of the rights and duties of the beneficial owners and the rights of third parties against the entity. We want to take all of that and we want to add this corporate idea, which was there would be limited liability for everybody. And the IRS said, absolutely not. We’re not buying it and we’re not, we’re not going to, we’re going to recognize this thing as a corporation. This was the LLC, the limited liability company and the limited liability company sat for like 10 or 15 years through successive you know US presidential administrations until and administration came to power that said, you know, that you know, instructed the treasury to bless this thing and to give it partnership tax treatment. I want to say that was like 19 I don’t have my, I don’t, probably early nineties or something like that. Okay. So that when that happened, you had the LLC, which was the best of both worlds. You had all these wonderful benefits of the partnership, but you had limited liability for all the beneficial stakeholders. Well, that was the beginning of a new era. And from that day forward, LLCs have been sort of the preferred entity, if you will. So, you know, really every business that’s created these days is now essentially created as an LLC unless you fit into, you know, some of these other smaller categories where, you know, because of the nature of the transaction, a partnership is desired more because of the nature of the transaction where it’s going to be a public traded company or something like that. You know, creation is required. So when I create an LLC, I’ve created an entity which has all the best attributes and characteristics that you could ever desire for an entity, for the most part. And then from a tax point of view, I’m not even committed at that point as to how it’s going to be taxed as Corp or I send a form into the IRS and I tell the IRS, and this is how I want my LLC to be taxed as a partnership, as a corporation, as an S corporation, or even as a disregarded entity, which means it’s going to exist under the law of the state in which it was organized. Florida, Delaware, California, New York, wherever. But for federal income tax purposes, it’s non-existent. We don’t even look at it. So you know, we could spend, you know, eight hours in it, but the, the short version is usually 95% of the time you’ll start with an LLC and you’ll kind of go from there.
Charles: Yeah. Most of the people listening are going to be longterm investors, a rental income kind of as their main goal. So if I was speaking to them at a very broad overview and 30 seconds how I did, how my accountant explained it to me was that, you know, LLCs for longterm passive income and you want at some point being done as an S Corp if it’s more active like flipping or properties like that.
James: LLC can be taxed as partnerships, which generally speaking for real estate, you always want to be taxed as a partnership. You know you know, there’s tax benefits if you’re contributing assets, hard assets, like real property to a partnership saying you’re doing a deal and one guy’s bringing the land, you know, he puts the land in somebody else’s, bring in something else, money cap, you know, capital services, et cetera. The contribution of the land is a nontaxable event. Okay. But then S-corporation you know, you would have a different outcome. You have the same kind of a situation with a distribution. You know, probably more, you know, we’re, we’re significant if you dis, if you distributed some of the land and it happens all the time, you have a partnership and you say, we’re going to distribute some of the land, we’re going to give, you know, we’re going to distribute some of the out parcels you know, to the members or you know, to another entity that’s going to then, you know, develop the property. Those are non-taxable events. If you distribute real estate in an, in a corporation or an S corporation, those are taxable events. So you’re not generating any revenue at that point, right? Cause you haven’t built anything. You haven’t sold anything. You’re not collecting any rents, you don’t want to pay tax. So, but if you’re under the corporation rules with the S corporation rules, you’ve got taxable events, which is complicated stuff that you don’t want to deal with under the partnership rules. It’s easy peasy. There’s no tax. So if you’re an operating entity, say you’re a a property manager, okay? You’re, you’re collecting fees for your property management services. You’re not dealing with you know, you know, real property, okay. Per say. You don’t have, you know, on your balance sheet, you don’t have, you know, actual real property. You know, you’re just, you just got service agreements with all your clients and you’re involved in the property management business or you’re involved in any business for that management. You’re in the podcasting business, you’re in you’re in the lawyer business, you’re in the financial services business or any kind of business as an escort, you know you know, it’s really no great. It’s not a secret that the default is you know, the income that passes through an escort is not subject to any sort of payroll or FICA or self employment tax or any of that stuff. Okay? so what you, what, what you’re, what you’re, you’re stuck with as an owner of an escort is you have to declare to the IRS what portion of your, your income is related to your you know, sort of your active involvement, if you will, or what’s your earned income. You know, when I first started, I’d see guys with W2’s ed, hundreds of thousand dollars coming through their escort and they gave themselves a $5,000 W2. It’s like, you know, but you get to set that number now your, your, if you set your number too low, you’re asking for trouble, you know, because the standard is you know ordinary and reasonable w which is, you know, a, a gray area, but you’ve got to set that Cedar. But so for an operating business, an S Corp might be more, might be more desirable. Yeah. Okay. So corporations aren’t going up, but what you can do is you can set your LLC LLC up and none of the checks up check the box elections elect to be treated as an escort. So still as a starting point, an LLC is often the preferable starting point unless, you know, for a fact, you know, I have clients who come in and they say, listen it’s a tech company and we’re definitely trying to take this thing public. You know, that’s, that’s where we’re headed with this. Then, you know, instead of doing an LLC and check the box to be treated as whatever, you know, we might say, well, let’s open this thing up as a corporation on day one. We want this whole thing organized in a format where we could eventually take it public. I don’t do any role public company work per se, but I do help people with exempt offerings. You know, where we’re sitting, we’re, we’re setting the entity up at the beginning. We’ve got the subscription agreement we’re taking in capital and you know,
Charles: Yeah, we do a lot of that with real or with our real estate syndications. So we have whatever the the exemption five Oh six B is the one we usually use. Five, Oh six C sometimes as well, but five or six P’s, what we normally will do with our, with our investors. So yeah, that’s, that’s a, it’s very interesting with the S Corp, it’s that’s what they tells me. He’s like, you gotta this and then this distribution. So you’ve gotta I mean, you know, he can’t get too greedy. You just have to be as everything has to be reasonable of what you’re getting paid and so forth.
James: It sounds like it consulting with your CPA
Charles: Few years back, cause I’ve done the same thing. I have LLCs that are S-corps. I have a inquiry. I’ve asked Corps for different stuff for, you know, for property management stuff. So all types of stuff with that. But all of our properties are held in LLCs. The only time I’ve heard differently would be we don’t have any Canadian Canadian investors right now on anything currently, but that’s always done as an LP. So because of the tax treaty, going back to what you were saying in the 80s, LLC was after.
James: Yeah. You know, there was this epiphany, if you will where the department of the treasury granted partnership tax treatment for the LLC, but a lot of countries they, in order to grant partnership tax treatment, you know, just sort of partnership, you know, accounting, tax treatment if you will granted that varies from country to country. But but the idea of just passing that income through without taxing it at a corporate level, you know, in order for a lot of countries before they grant that they want at least one person to be a general partner. And that’s just not what you have in an LLC. We kind of leapfrogged past that. So we had a transaction come up in my office a couple of years ago where we instead of selling the assets, we ended up selling the company so that we didn’t have that sort of pass through income to the, it was a, a Canadian we’ll call him the owner, if you will, the beneficiary, the stake holder. And if we had done an asset sale, the proceeds from the transaction would have flowed through the entity and they would have been two layers of tax. Okay. And that’s in addition to dealing with us and Canadian sort of tax issues and credits. So what we ended up doing was we sold the company and that was harder for that was harder for some buyers to wrap their head around, you know, why am I going to buy the company when I just want your real estate and your real estate is the only thing in the company. But you know, with a little bit of patient patients and you know, the right brokers, you know you can sort of mitigate you can mitigate some of those challenges.
Charles: They do not, I wouldn’t say a lot, but that’s, it’s done. I’ve seen before where to avoid a step up in property taxes. So if someone’s owned in the corporation, they sell a corporation. If it’s been known, that property has been known in their 10 plus years, let’s say. And it hasn’t really, they haven’t really reassess the property taxes at the true value, especially from 2008, you know, 12 years later, 11 years later to where we are now. So we’ll sell that, which is a very complicated thing. And I don’t suggest anyone to, to, to take that on if they don’t know what they’re doing. But it’s, it’s, that’s kind of an idea that people have of doing that. So it’s very interesting.
James: Yeah, that was a, I think that was really prevalent before the the great recession and you know, what folks were doing. My understanding was that instead of selling the property, they just drop it in LLC and then the next day they transfer the LLC. So what the Florida department of revenue did a couple years ago I guess they all have, they had some downtime during the recession, corrected the tax rolls. Now there’s a three year period. So if the LLC or the entity, the corporation, whatever it is, if it’s only the real estate for for three years, then there’s no, there’s no dock stamps on the trans. Now for property taxes, that’s a whole nother ball of wax. But you know, really doc stamps was the, the tax that these folks.
Charles: I want to transition a little bit, James, into foreign investors cause you work with a lot of non U S entity or a lot of US, non US investors with their, you own U S entities and you’re a member of a I guess you’d say an organization or association called IRR global and it’s very interesting. Can you explain a little bit more about that?
James: Today, I’ve been a member for, I’d say five or six years and I’d say about the organizations based out of Europe, London specifically. But about a third of the membership comes from Europe. About a third of the membership comes from North America. And then the remaining third is kind of spread out across Asia and South America and Africa and the middle East. So it’s really a phenomenal group. I use it all the time now. I mean, I’ve constantly got things coming up where you know, someone is you know, getting a referral from, from someone, Hey, you know, you’re working on a, a business transaction, not, it’s not even Florida sometimes, sometimes now it’s the United States, you know, because you know, for certain things like a us tax, you know, you don’t need your attorney to be anywhere in particular, you know, because the U S tax system is, you know, applicable all through the entire United States. But it’s been a, it’s been a great group and you know I’ve been spending a lot of time in South America the last couple of years. My wife is from Ecuador. So another kind of reason that I was interested in the group was, you know, it kind of gives me a lot of exposure to that market. Whereas, you know, even though I’m in Florida and we do have a lot of you know, a lot of people who are coming from South America and central America that are, you know, putting money here or they’re moving here, whatever the organization just gives me greater exposure to that market is.
Charles: Yeah. So when you have foreign investors that are coming in and say they want to invest into real estate and what is, what are the first few steps, how do you, how do you guide them and they say you just want to buy something like say an apartment building or a commercial property in the United States. What are the first few steps that you do to get them set up for that process? To do that?
James: Yeah. well it really depends on the really depends on the investor, right? Because some investors are very savvy and you know, I’ll begin by sort of explaining the ABC’s of anything, you know, if it’s getting the bank account set up for the LLC or whatever, and they’ll say, Hey James, it’s okay. You know, believe me, I know all this, you know, I’ve been investing in the United States for 25 years or something, you know, and so, you know what I mean? There’s, there’s a lot of foreign investors who have a lot of experience in the United States. They may have accountants, they may have banking relationships, they may have attorneys and I might just be getting the call because, you know, the deals in Florida,
James: Somebody in Florida or their existing counselor you know, is unavailable.
Charles: Well, was if it was like their first time investing, would you have to go through the whole process of obtaining an ITIN and they’ll like the whole nine yards from there.
James: Yeah. On the other end of the spectrum is, you know, as somebody who has very little experience now that person’s harder, right? Because they don’t really understand how the US market works. So if I say something like, you know, I walk them through maybe 30, 40, 50 minutes of, you know, this is what’s gonna, what’s gonna be involved and the setting up the entity and the tax and whatever. And you know, even, I mean, all this stuff is so time consuming, you know, trying to really get, get an understand how even the bank help opening bank accounts work or getting an ITIN or you know, basic tax stuff or a real estate contract, sort of customs and traditions for, you know, what you should expect in a real estate contract or like an M&A deal. And then I say, so that right there that, that’s daunting. And then too, you know, when I asked for my retainer, which is, you know, it’s a reasonable a mail for people that are familiar with the market. If I say, okay, well, you know, you should probably give me like a $5,000 retainer so we can, you know, start off and, you know, that should get us through most of the deal or whatever, you know, and they have no idea, you know, they’re coming from a country where, you know, attorneys are not trusted and they’re, you know you know, they don’t get, they don’t, they really, they don’t have that trust level with attorneys. So they’re, they’re really not sure. So it’s really hard working with folks who lack that background. My clients tend to be more sophisticated people who are coming through IOR global or they’re getting referred to me through, you know, sort of established, you know, channels, community to real estate brokers, et cetera. And it’s, it’s usually not their first deal, but you’re right in the beginning. And I’ve done it, you know, you need to do everything. And even if take that, take that example that I gave you about the the Canadian guy. Okay. Where we basically had a portfolio of real estate and we’d be, we did a disposition, but we had to transfer the company, not the real estate. Okay. You know, there were nuances and intricacies of that deal that, you know, I had to learn and work on, you know, so, you know, or I had another engagement a couple months ago and one guy was from England, the, the partners. One guy was from Botswana, I think, and the other guy was from somewhere else. So it’s, you know, it’s even these guys are all sophisticated, right? Yeah. They’re all sophisticated. But you know, the problem just got more complicated. So my clients tend to be more towards the sophisticated end of things. And then the less sophisticated folks, I just asked them, listen, you just gotta trust me and I’ll walk you through it. And, but you know, a lot of the basics don’t change, you know, the entity formation you know, if you need an ITIN, obviously that’s a different process
Charles: And that goes through much faster when working with an attorney versus them doing that themselves. Obviously,
James: I can’t imagine doing some of this stuff on your own mean no, I’ve got all the training and the education as a CPA and, you know, worked in public accounting and work. You know, I worked on as a tax repair for over 10 years. I’ve got the law degree. You know, I’ve worked in real estate transactions, M&A transactions, securities work, all this stuff. And, you know, it still takes me hours sometimes to navigate through, you know, IRS regulations and just fill out the forms and you know, to send everything in. The worst thing that can happen is one of the worst things that can ever happen to somebody. Okay. Is you spend all this time working on something and then you send it out and then it gets sent back to you with a letter from the IRS that says, Hey, you didn’t really do this right. Believe me, the IRS doesn’t write like some detailed letter. These are the things you need to fix and correct. You know, they just say, sorry, you didn’t fill the form out. Right, please resubmit the form. So, you know for an unsophisticated person, you know, I, I, I, I don’t think that’s the right way to go about it. I think that a few thousand dollars on getting some professionals involved, whether it’s an attorney, you know, surrounding, I think in, in our email correspondence you’ve kind of asked me for some, you know, kind of bullet points and one of my, one of my biggest bullet points and it’s the advice that I’m happy to offer it is, you know, you always have to build out your team, you know, build out your team, have brokers, have business advisors, have CPAs, have bookkeepers, have property managers, have attorneys, have a transactional attorney and have a litigation attorney because sometimes you run into a business dispute and you know, I feel that I’m pretty good resource for business advice, but you got breach of contract or you know, a counterparty that’s defaulting on something, you know, I’m not going to go and file a lawsuit for you. It’s a totally separate skill set. So, you know, the most of the most important things that a novice investor or a new foreign investor can do is build that team out. And believe me, the team is not just James Schmidt and it’s not just your broker, it’s, you know, a team of everybody.
Charles: Yeah. Especially when dealing with real estate, there’s so many moving parts that go with that. Even if you’re, you know, you’re the broker or property manager, the whole nine yards because someone that’s investing foreign is most likely not handling property management themselves or putting together that the employees themselves. So yeah, it’s definitely, that’s why people ask them. It’s like, you know, it’s [inaudible] you have to get the entity. But normally with larger investors that we deal with that come to us, they normally have all that stuff set up. And as you were saying, they’re more sophisticated. If they’re already coming in, they already have some sort of setup, whether it’s an LLC for something else they invested in and then this is just something new. So they have some sort of knowledge of it. It’s really just, you know, for new investors that come in, it might be their first investment with it, you know, in the United States, in real estate to speak with someone and to go through the whole process. Kind of give him a bullet list of what they have to do and you know, what it costs and put you on retainer and stuff like that. So.
James: Yeah. Now for some of the more sophisticated people they’ve got they still have some challenges out there. They’ve got a big estate planning problem, right? If you if you’re in the United States, if you’re a US taxpayer and you, when you pass away, you have an exemption. I think it’s, I think it’s seven. Is it $14 million now.
Charles: It’s change with Trump, right?
James: Yeah. I mean, it’s massive. You have this huge, you know, I’m not, you know, I’m doing a lot of estate planning, but you have this huge exemption. You get the huge credit against tax. So, but if you’re a non US taxpayer, it’s $60,000. So let’s say you for whatever reason, your, your, your older person or something tragic happens and you die owning a piece of US real estate and it’s worth $1 million, you’re paying tax on $940,000. Right? That’s really, that’s crazy. So you know, there’s some sophisticated estate planning you know, things that we can do to minimize that, but it involves setting up multiple levels of partnerships and, you know, to the guy who’s flinching at, you know, putting up a $5,000 retainer, they’re really flinching when you’re telling them that, you know, to get all this paper, it’s going to cost 10 grand or something. You know, they just literally, they can’t believe it. You know, they can’t wrap their head around why it costs that much to produce just a bunch of paper basically and form some entities. And then the other thing that even the very sophisticated people have to deal with is sort of the discrepancies between how a transaction is treated for US purposes and how a transaction is treated, you know, in their home jurisdiction.
James: That can be really, really time consuming to spend time on those things. You know, I don’t, I can’t become an expert on the tax system in the United Kingdom or tax system in you know, France, you know, every time a transaction comes up you know, I have to go and spend hours researching tax treaty and what’s going to happen. And that’s where this organization comes in. Very helpful, you know, because I literally with the, just at my fingertips, I could have, you know, experts in, you know, any, any sort of Western or modern country, you know, whatever you want to call them. First world country, you know, I just go look and I’ve got lists of people that either handle tax work or transactional work or you know, deal with intangibles like patents, you know, in all of the, the, all of the countries where, you know, 99% of my clients who are non US are coming from.
Charles: Yeah. It’s always important that they have that council in their home country, no matter what they’re doing. So for legal and also for, for taxes. Of course, especially with it being so easy with the IRR global. But so James, it’s great to have you here. I want, I want to know where can working listeners learn more about you and your firm if they want to engage you.
New Speaker: The office phone number never changes. That’s (813) 250-3700. And the domain for the law firm is schmidtlawoffice. That’s S C H M I D T law office.com. I thought that was a short domain when I registered it 12 years ago. I realize now it is not a short domain, but it is what it is. But if you go to www.schmidtlawoffice.com, you know, you’ll get all the information, you’ll get our address. You know, you’ve got some, some other information about things we’ve worked on and specialties and all that kind of stuff. And my email address is [email protected]
Charles: Okay, perfect. Yeah, well I’ll put that everything into the show notes and to the podcast and YouTube notes and I want to thank you again for being on the show. It was awesome and I look forward to connecting with you in the future.
James: Great. Thank you Charles. It’s been a pleasure.
Charles: Thanks. Have a great day.
James: You too.
Charles: Hi guys, this is Charles from the Global Investors Podcast. I hope you enjoyed the show. If you’re interested in investing in real estate and you don’t know where to begin, set up a free 15 minute strategy call with me at schedulecharles.com. That’s schedulecharles.com.
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About James A. Schmidt
James A. Schmidt, Esq., practices in the areas of business, tax and real estate law, representing individuals, companies, lenders and investors in their transactional matters.
Before practicing law, Mr. Schmidt worked as a Certified Public Accountant for eight years in both the audit and tax fields, and provided transaction services in public stock and debt offerings. Today, Mr. Schmidt’s practice caters to parties involved in sophisticated transactions that require transactional and tax advice and prefer to receive it from the same counsel.
In Mr. Schmidt’s real estate practice, he represents developers, buyers and sellers in real property development, sales and leasing matters, and well as lenders and borrowers in financing and loan transactions. This practice encompasses commercial and residential property and includes a full range of closing and title insurance services so that his firm provides a comprehensive solution to any party in need of real estate counsel.
He advises U.S. and non-U.S. individuals and entities in a wide range of matters which allow them to conduct their operations in the most efficient manner possible. His interdisciplinary background provides an advantage to parties desiring ensure compliance with the law while maintaining the highest fidelity to their business objectives.
Mr. Schmidt is an active leader in many of the organizations which he belongs to. He is the co-chairman of the Small Firm Section and the Tax Section of the Hillsborough County Bar Association, is a co-director of the Tax Section of The Florida Bar, and serves on several committees of the Tax Section of the American Bar Association.
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