Adam advises businesses and their owners on structuring transactions and in addressing complex federal income tax issues. He represents family offices, individuals, closely held businesses, and start-up companies. Other law firms frequently turn to Adam as co-counsel for their clients’ tax matters and to consult on their own firm management issues. For many of his clients, Adam serves as general counsel, strategically addressing personal and business matters and finding the necessary resources to address legal and other issues they face.
Adam’s clients appreciate the depth and diversity of his experience in tax, corporate and family business matters. Adam teams with other attorneys in addressing income tax issues in business transactions and estate plans, develops strategies for addressing tax issues related to loan workouts, assists clients in structuring compensation plans including deferred compensation plans, and represents clients in tax disputes before the Internal Revenue Service. Adam has counseled clients in mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, business formations, capital raises and compensation-related matters involving partnerships, limited liability companies, corporations, and trusts. He frequently works with closely-held businesses to address succession issues and ownership transitions.
During his career, Adam has worked in both private law firms and closely held businesses, including the tax department of a global law firm and as in-house counsel to the financial group of one of Chicago's most prominent families. Most recently, Adam was the managing partner of a mId-size law firm that included his name.
Prior to practicing law, Adam worked as a drummer and music teacher in San Francisco and Chicago. He has also performed with the Chicago Bar Association Barristers Big Band and continues to perform and record with bands in the Chicago area.
Adam earned his J.D. from the University of Chicago and his B.A. in history, magna cum laude, from Columbia University.
Admissions - State
- University of Chicago Law School
- Columbia University
Honors and Awards
- Recognized by Leading Lawyers for his work in the areas of Closely & Privately Held Business Law, Tax Law for Individuals and for Businesses, and Corporate Finance Law (2012-2017)
- Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent Rated 5.0/5.0 in the areas of Taxation, Business Law and Corporate Law
- Selected for inclusion in Illinois Super Lawyers (2020)
- American Bar Association
- Illinois State Bar Association
- City Tax Club of Chicago
Public Service and Volunteerism
- Grant Park Orchestral Association, board member (2014-present), vice chair of the board (2016-present), chair of Education and Community Engagement Committee (2015-2017), chair of the Nominating and Governance Committee (2017-present), member of the Executive Committee (2015-present), member of the Finance Committee (2016-present)
- ProVisors (2016-present); leader of Chicago Estate and Succession Planning Affinity Group (2019-present)
- Small Business Advocacy Council (2011-2014)
- Near North Montessori School, Audit Committee of the Board of Directors (2010-2016)
- Chicago Bar Association, Barristers Big Band, drummer (2008-2014)
- Suzuki-Orff School for Young Musicians, board member (2001-2005)
- Friends of Erhler Park, founder, director, president and secretary (2001-2005)
- Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act passes Senate
- States allowing for deferral of tax payments and tax return filings
- CARES Act tax issues for real estate
- IRS allowing more time to file federal tax returns and to pay federal taxes
- CARES Act: An early analysis of the historic Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act
- Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act makes important changes to PPP
- IRS clarifies no deduction for PPP loan forgiveness expenses
- Employers may make tax-free payments to employees for COVID-19 expenses
- CARES Act: A summary of tax issues
- CARES Act: Employee retention credit for employers subject to closure due to the coronavirus pandemic
- Tax credits ease cost of extension of paid sick leave and FMLA
- IRS allowing more time to pay federal income taxes
- McDonald Hopkins represents GRAIL in $390M Series D financing
- Prominent Chicago tax attorney Adam J. Grais joins McDonald Hopkins LLC
- McDonald Hopkins attorneys recognized as 2020 Illinois Super Lawyers and Rising Stars
- "Taxes in Business Sales," CFO Simplified Blog, April 11, 2019
- "Qualified Opportunity Zone Funds: A New Tool for Real Estate Investors", Financial Poise, February 15, 2019
- Profile in Leading Lawyers Special Section with Ronald Grais for Law Day 2015