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As a full-service law firm, Hill Ward Henderson caters to the needs of clients spanning a broad range of industries and professions. With over 100 attorneys, the scope of practice areas we provide is vast, with much depth and “bench strength” among both transactional and litigation disciplines. 

Opportunity Zones

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As part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, the new Qualified Opportunity Zone program was enacted to spur economic growth and investment in specified low-income communities.  To encourage private investment in these communities, the new program provides investors with significant tax benefits, including deferral of capital gains, partial elimination of deferred gains, and eliminating federal income tax for appreciation in these investments.  

In order to obtain these benefits, investors and qualified opportunity funds must meet numerous requirements set out in the statutes and regulations.  At Hill Ward Henderson, we have compiled a cross-disciplinary group specializing in real estate, tax, corporate, finance, and construction to assist with these requirements.  Our lawyers have followed and reviewed this program since its inception and continue to track developments and regulations for the Opportunity Zone program. We regularly advise investors, fund sponsors, developers, financial institutions, lenders, private equity funds, entrepreneurs and businesses on how to navigate and realize the benefits of the federal Opportunity Zone program and other investment tax incentives. Our multidisciplinary team guides clients through each step in Opportunity Zone transactions including:

• Navigating Opportunity Zone program requirements
• Locating properties within qualified Opportunity Zones
• Establishing and certifying qualified opportunity funds (QOF)
• Developing appropriate deal structures 
• Structuring, negotiating and documenting investments in Opportunity Zone projects

Since the enactment of this legislation at the end of 2017, Hill Ward Henderson has represented clients with respect to over half a billion dollars (> $500,000,000) in real estate and business investments throughout Florida and the United States, including:

  • Representing family offices with respect to several Opportunity Zone transactions, including an investment in an Opportunity Fund that is developing and will operate a hospitality-anchored mixed use project in the Rocky Mountain region of the United States.
  • Representing numerous private individual investors with respect to the acquisition and development of properties located in Opportunity Zones, including advising on appropriate deal structures to qualify for the tax incentives of the Opportunity Zone program.
  • Representing a Florida-based real estate developer and sponsor in connection with creating an Opportunity Fund for the development of a large, multi-family project in Central Florida, including drafting and negotiating joint venture documents, subscription agreements, and disclosure statements with its various investors.
  • Representing a family office with respect to qualifying a new business venture for the tax incentives of the Opportunity Zone program.

Interested in finding a qualified opportunity zone?  Below is a link for the qualified opportunity zones within the State of Florida.  

Link to qualified opportunity zones within the State of Florida.

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