Rising Stars

Firms To Watch: Real estate investment trusts (REITs)

Arnold & Porter advises on the formation and operation of public and private REITs, and places great emphasis on cross-border work in the space, with mandates spanning multiple jurisdictions in the US, Europe and South America. Experienced tax and corporate lawyer Joseph Howe  spearheads the work and is the key point of contact.

Real estate investment trusts (REITs) in United States


Goodwin remains a market leader for real estate investment trusts, handling a full suite of matters that spans both public and private REITs and includes large scale IPOs, equity and debt offerings, M&A and complex joint-venture investments, on behalf of a broad client list that includes major global financial institutions. Ettore Santucci is well known in the space for his representation of publicly traded REITs and real estate operating companies in corporate finance, M&A and corporate governance matters. He co-chairs the practice group alongside New York’s Yoel Kranz, who assumed the role after esteemed REITs practitioner Gil Menna stepped back to an of counsel role. Other key contacts within the group include Scott Chase , who is frequently engaged on the full-range of corporate and securities matters, whilst Mark Opper ‘s practice emphasizes REITs and real estate operating companies, advising on IPOs, follow on and 144A offerings. Counsel Christopher Versfelt is another stand-out for his M&A focus, alongside offerings of equity and debt securities, and complex financing transactions. All attorneys are based in Boston unless otherwise stated.

Practice head(s):

Yoel Kranz; Ettore Santucci

Other key lawyers:

Gil Menna; Scott Chase; Mark Opper; Christopher Versfelt; Yoel Kranz

Key clients

AvalonBay Communities

Boston Properties

Gaming & Leisure Properties

The Macerich Company

Mid-America Apartment Communities

Medical Properties Trust

Paramount Group

Retail Properties of America

Two Harbors Investment Corp.


Work highlights

  • Advised Donahue Schriber Realty Group, Inc. in connection with its sale to First Washington Realty.
  • Advised Gaming and Leisure Properties, Inc on its definitive agreements to acquire the real property assets of Live! Casino & Hotel Maryland, Live! Casino & Hotel Philadelphia, and Live! Casino Pittsburgh.

Hogan Lovells US LLP

Hogan Lovells US LLP is regarded a ‘pre-eminent firm’ for REITs by clients, notable for handling a full range of high-end transactional matters in the space. The team has a strong track record in IPOs, M&A, capital markets, joint ventures and corporate governance issues. The group is headed up by Washington DC-based David Bonser, who led alongside Stacey McEvoy in advising Duke Realty Corporation on a $23bn merger with Prologis. Prentiss Feagles is vastly experienced in the area, excelling on complex transactional mandates. Praised as ‘brilliant and creative in solving complex tax structuring matters’, Cristina Arumi heads the firm’s REIT tax practices, lending her considerable knowledge advising on the tax aspects of capital markets and M&A involving REITs, while Mike McTiernan focuses his practice on REIT-specific corporate and securities issues, whilst Andrew Zahn is another important name within the group. All lawyers referenced here are resident in the firm’s Washington D.C office.

Practice head(s):

David Bonser

Other key lawyers:

Prentiss Feagles; Cristina Arumi; Mike McTiernan; Stacey McEvoy; Andrew Zahn


‘Hogan is one of the pre-eminent firms as it relates to the REIT industry.’

‘David Bonser heads the group. He is great, combining experience and judgement to give us thoughtful guidance.’

‘Hogan is exceptional strong across M&A and capital markets in the REIT space. Handling complex tax, structuring, and capital markets issues with ease.’

‘Exceptional depth of knowledge. Top tier legal talent and expertise.’

‘There is no team in the REIT space that compares to the depth and breadth of Hogan’s REIT practice, including how seamlessly the corporate practice works with the REIT tax specialists on the team. Hogan’s REIT practice has more experience representing REITs in the full life cycle of the REIT – from cradle to grave – than any other practice in the country. They are equally as qualified to work on capital markets transactions (IPOs, follow-on offerings) and securities compliance work, as well as complex M&A transactions.’

‘The Hogan team across the board is not only very knowledgeable and hard-working, but they are also incredibly collegial and fun to work with. David Bonser has become the elder statesman of the practice and given his breadth of experience, is exceptional in front of a board when dealing with “bet the company” transactions. Andy Zahn is a terrific young partner that makes himself available whenever needed and always goes the extra mile for the client.’

‘It would be impossible to discuss the REITs practice at Hogan without a specific reference to Cristina Arumi, who is a REIT tax partner that is truly second to none. She is not only brilliant and creative in solving complex tax structuring matters, but also exceptionally poised such that she can speak directly to a Board of Directors on complex legal matters. Cristina has advised us on our most complex, highly structured transaction – always working towards a business-oriented solution.’

Key clients

American Homes 4 Rent

Brixmor Property Group

DigitalBridge Group

Duke Realty Corporation

Franklin BSP Realty Trust

Griffin Realty Trust

JBG Smith Properties

Kite Realty Group Trust

Park Hotels & Resorts

Public Storage

VICI Properties


Work highlights

  • Advised Duke Realty Corporation on its approximately US$23 billion combination with Prologis Inc.
  • Advised VICI on its US$17.2 billion strategic acquisition of MGM Growth Properties LLC.
  • Advised FBRT on its merger with Capstead Mortgage Corporation.

Latham & Watkins LLP

The team at Latham & Watkins LLP has a strong reputation for its expertise and experience through all phases of the REITs lifecycle. Core pillars of the group’s practice include complex roll-up IPOs and structuring high-value REIT organizations. Corporate finance and M&A expert Julian Kleindorfer jointly leads the team alongside Ana O’Brien  who specializes in complex REIT tax matters. Other key names include Lewis Kneib, who represents high-end clients on a range of capital markets transactions, and securities-focused William Cernius , who is based in Orange County. Brent Epstein focuses his practice on REIT public offerings. All lawyers are in Los Angeles unless otherwise stated.

Practice head(s):

Julian Kleindorfer; Ana O’Brien

Other key lawyers:

Brent Epstein; William Cernius; Lewis Kneib


‘Latham & Watkins has a premier REIT practice with exceptional expertise across all disciplines related to REITs – tax, corporate finance and SEC compliance.’

‘Ana O’Brien is an exceptionally knowledgeable REIT tax partner who combines technical expertise with practical insights. Ana consistently brings experience and creativity to engagements to drive results.’

‘The team at Latham are true business partners not just lawyers. I can find a lawyer nearly anywhere, what I need is a business person who knows the law. I get that every time from my Latham team. They have helped me out of jams, but more importantly have helped me execute flawlessly ahead of time. Extremely grateful for the work they do and the collaboration they consistently bring to the table.’

‘Lewis Kneib has been a stand out support for me at two different organizations. I have recommended him to others and all he does is make me look good for the recommendation. His ability to know the law, explain what we are are looking at now and what to expect in the future is top of the world.

‘Julian Kleindorfer is the source for REIT expertise, relationships and knowledge. Simply none better.’

Key clients

Digital Realty Trust

Pacific Investment Management Company (PIMCO)

Morgan Stanley

Special Committee of the Board of Directors of Switch

Simon Property Group

Invitation Homes

Phillips Edison REIT

Hudson Pacific Properties

Extra Space Storage


Xenia Hotels & Resorts

Rexford Industrial Realty

Bank of America

Highgate Hotels

Realty Income Corporation

Inventrust Properties Corp

Four Corners Property Trust

Hyatt Hotels Corporation

Multinational banking and financial services company

DLA Piper LLP (US)

DLA Piper LLP (US) focuses on advising both public and private REITs, alongside real estate operating and financing companies at every stage of the REIT life-cycle. The team’s steady deal-flow sees REIT formation, debt and equity offerings, UPREIT and DownREIT transactions, alongside complex M&A issues on behalf of major financial institutions and investment banks. Robert Bergdolt leads the team from Raleigh, and is an important name for securities regulations and non-traded REITs. In New York, Kerry Johnson co-chairs the wider real estate department and is vastly experienced in public-exchange listed REITs matters, while San Diego’s Darryl Steinhause  is a core member of the team with deep experience on securities transactions and specialized tax matters. New York’s Shiukay Hung is also an ‘industry savvy‘ go-to name for tax implications of REIT transactions.

Practice head(s):

Robert Bergdolt

Other key lawyers:

Shiukay Hung; Darryl Steinhause; Kerry Johnson


‘DLA’s stature and involvement with the REIT industry is huge.’

‘Rob Bergdolt was a key participant in both the lead-up to and the sale of the company. Shiukay Hung facilitated the satisfactory resolution of a delicate tax issue during the sale of the company.’

‘Shiukay Hung is the tax partner and shows exceptional client commitment. He is always available and provides creative solutions.’

‘Darryl and his team are at the cutting edge of legal and tax structuring for real estate. He is an icon in the business and his work is always thorough, detailed and insightful.’

‘I have worked with and across from Shiukay Hung on a number of occasions and have tremendous respect for his tenaciously thoughtful approach to complicated problems. Shiukay has been focusing on real estate and REITs for many years in law firms and in house which provides him with a unique perspective. Shiukay has emerged as a thought leader in the REIT tax community, actively participating in various industry groups and regularly publishing on REIT matters. He is one of the most engaged tax practitioners in this area and provides insightful practical advice to his clients.’

‘The DLA team is a well oiled machine. They are integrated – they know when to bring in different experts to ensure your issues are well addressed. Their team of professionals has the depth and breadth necessary to provide clients with advice.’

‘Shiukay Hung – a REITs expert who advises us on a wide range of issues. He is industry savvy and a tax technical expert. Shiukay keeps us abreast of key tax reform updates, while also pointing out practical issues for us as they arise during transactions.’

Key clients

Ashford Hospitality Trust

Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust, Inc.

Braemar Hotels & Resorts


Cottonwood Communities

Equity Residential

Getty Realty Corp

Griffin-American Healthcare REIT III

Highwoods Properties

Resource REIT

STAG Industrial

STORE Capital Corporation

W.P. Carey

Work highlights

  • Represented Resource REIT, Inc in its merger with Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust, Inc.
  • Represented STORE Capital Corporation on its entry into a definitive agreement to be acquired by GIC.
  • Representing Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust, Inc in an offering of up to US$60 billion in shares of common stock.

Greenberg Traurig, LLP

Greenberg Traurig, LLP is involved in the entire life-cycle of REITs transactions, handling work spanning IPOs, private and follow-on offerings, SEC reporting, M&A issues, corporate governance and dispositions. The team also has a robust track record for representing private, traded and non-traded REITs, alongside underwriters, and has experience working with the federal regulators.. New York-based attorneys Joseph Herz and Robert Ivanhoe co-head the global practice, focusing on capital markets and M&A, and real estate structures respectively Boston’s Jennifer Weiss is a key name when it comes to associated tax issues. New York-based Timothy Donovan and Corey Light in Chicago are also key names in the team.

Practice head(s):

Robert Ivanhoe; Joseph Herz

Other key lawyers:

Jennifer Weiss; Timothy Donovan; Corey Light

Kirkland & Ellis LLP

Kirkland & Ellis LLP draws from the firm’s strength across the board to advise public and privately traded REITs on an array of M&A, real estate, tax and capital markets issues including debt and equity offerings, financings and restructurings, portfolio transactions and IPOs. In New York, Michael Brueck focuses on M&A, whilst Mike Beinus represents clients on complex REITs-associated tax matters. Chicago’s Bruce Gelman  maintains his practice in advising on organization and structuring of REITs. Also in New York, Sarkis Jebejian  is another key name for transactional work.

Practice head(s):

Michael Brueck; Mike Beinus

Other key lawyers:

Bruce Gelman; Sarkis Jebejian

Key clients

Safehold Special Committee

Oak Street Real Estate Capital

Dune Real Estate Partners

GLP Capital Partners

Starwood Capital Group Global

Starwood Real Estate Income Trust

Hudson Pacific Properties

Washington Prime Group


Equity Lifestyle Properties

Equity Residential

Sunstone Hotel Investors

Essex Property Trust


Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co

Carlyle Global Credit Investment Management

Cerberus Capital Management

Brookfield Asset Management

GEM Realty Capital

LaSalle Investment Management

Work highlights

  • Advised Oak Street Real Estate Capital on its acquisition together with GIC of STORE Capital Corporation.
  • Advised the special committee of the board of Safehold in connection with Safehold’s $6.4 billion tax-free, strategic combination with its controlling shareholder iStar Inc.
  • Represented Carlyle Global Credit Investment Management LLC in its purchase and financing of a portfolio of real property assets from iStar Inc. for an enterprise value of approximately $3 billion.

Morrison Foerster

Morrison Foerster‘s ‘top notch’ practice acts on behalf of sponsors, issuers, and REIT underwriters across the full spectrum of asset classes. The group’s corporate and transactional work in the space includes M&A, debt and equity offerings, alongside secondary offerings, joint ventures, and IPOs. Jointly led by David Slotkin and Justin Salon, the team also has demonstrable experience on formation and conversion, OP unit transactions and other UPREIT and DownREIT issues. Larry Medvinsky maintains his diverse REIT practice, focusing on corporate, securities, M&A, joint venture and fund formation, while Alice Connaughton advises on corporate issues including public and private securities offerings, and tender offers. After the departure of Heath Linsky in 2022, the group was bolstered by the elevation of Austin’s John Hensley to partner level in April 2022.

Practice head(s):

David Slotkin; Justin Salon

Other key lawyers:

Larry Medvinsky; Alice Connaughton


‘Morrison Foerster’s REIT practice is top notch, with a high level of expertise in all relevant practices applicable to REITs, including corporate and securities, M&A, tax, capital markets, SEC compliance and real estate.’

‘David Slotkin is among the top attorneys in the sector, and has few peers. He has a high level of expertise in all areas of law relevant to REITs, especially M&A and Capital Markets, and is a business-minded practical advisor who is a dealmaker at the same time as providing extremely valuable legal counsel. He is also highly responsive and efficient.’

Key clients

American Healthcare Investors, LLC

Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Inc.

Antarctica Capital, LLC

Ares Industrial Real Estate Income Trust Inc.

Armada Hoffler Properties, Inc.

Ascend Medical Holdings, LLC

Aventine Property Group, Inc.

Barclays Capital Inc.

BofA Securities, Inc.

B. Riley Securities, Inc.

Broad Street Realty, Inc.

Citigroup Global Markets Inc.

Equity Residential

Farmland Partners, Inc.

Freehold Properties, Inc.

Hines Global Income Trust, Inc.

Piper Sandler Companies

Steadfast Apartment REIT

Strategic Capital Fund Management

Treehouse REIT

UDR, Inc.

UBS Securities, LLC

Wells Fargo Securities LLC

Work highlights

  • Represented the underwriters in the secondary offering of 8,250,000 shares of Class A common stock of BrightSpire Capital, Inc. by a stockholder affiliated with DigitalBridge Group, Inc.
  • Represented the underwriters in Modiv Inc.’s public offering of 2 million shares of its newly designated 7.375% Series A Cumulative Redeemable Perpetual Preferred Stock, which is traded on the New York Stock Exchange.
  • Represented Armada Hoffler Properties, Inc in its $58 million underwritten public offering of 3,500,000 shares of its common stock.

Proskauer Rose LLP

Proskauer Rose LLP remains active in the non-traded REITs space, with a strong record in advising on a range of matters ranging from formation and structuring, to evaluating and pursuing mergers and listings. The group counts major financial institutions and dedicated investment funds as key clients, including Blackstone, Digitalbridge and Morgan Stanley. The team also has the capability to handle a full-range of transactional work; co-head Steven Lichtenfeld  is a key name on IPOs, equity and debt financings. Fellow co-head Michael Choate  is vastly experienced in capital markets, major M&A and corporate finance issues.

Practice head(s):

Michael Choate; Steven Lichtenfeld

Key clients

American Finance Trust

Ares Capital Management


DigitalBridge Investment Management

Fortress Credit Co LLC

Global Net Lease, Inc.

Healthcare Trust Inc.

Hospitality Investors Trust

Inland Real Estate Income Trust

Leisure Acquisition Corporation

MG3 Developer Group

Morgan Stanley

New York City REIT

Pacific Oak Residential Trust II

Work highlights

  • Representating American Finance Trust, Inc., in transactions including over $1 billion in multiple, diverse offerings.
  • Represented Ares Capital Management in its $3.84 billion acquisition of Capital Automotive LLC and its subsidiaries from Brookfield Strategic Real Estate Partners through a REIT structure.
  • Representing Global Net Lease Inc. (NYSE: GNL) in a $200 million ATM offering of Series B preferred stock.

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP maintains its strong reputation for handling major transactional mandates in the space. The group continues its longstanding relationship with major private equity fund, Blackstone – providing representation on a vast range of different transactions in 2022, including the $12.8 billion acquisition of American Campus Communities. New York-based Brian Stadler has extensive experience on M&A  involving REITS, co-leading the group in conjunction with Edgar Lewandowski, who focuses on capital markets matters, and Gregory Ressa. Nancy Mehlman is another key name as co-head of the firm’s tax practice, advising on tax issues associated with real estate transactions.

Practice head(s):

Gregory Ressa; Brian Stadler; Edgar Lewandowski

Other key lawyers:

Nancy Mehlman

Key clients


Invitation Homes

J.P. Morgan Securities

Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust

Blackstone Mortgage Trust

KKR Real Estate Finance Trust

Citigroup Global Markets

BioMed Realty

Crown Acquisitions

Centerbridge Partners

ESH Hospitality

Black Creek Group

DigitalBridge Group

QTS Realty Trust

Work highlights

  • Representing Blackstone Core+ perpetual capital vehicles in their acquisition of American Campus Communities in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately $12.8 billion.
  • Representing affiliates of DigitalBridge Group in the proposed acquisition of Switch in a transaction valued at $11 billion, including the assumption of debt.
  • Representing affiliates of Blackstone Real Estate in their acquisition of PS Business Parks in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately $7.6 billion.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP

The vastly experienced team at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP is frequently instructed on a full suite of complex, cross-border matters that includes REIT formations, M&A, recapitalizations, liquidations, financings, restructurings and both public and private offerings, among others. Underwritings and tax-related matters are other key disciplines for the group. The team works on behalf of a vast portfolio of equity, mortgage, hybrid and special purpose funds. Global head of the capital markets group, David Goldschmidt, is based in the New York office and jointly leads the team alongside Paolo Alto’s Gregg Noel, New York-based Harvey Uris, and Chicago’s David Polster. Other key points of contact include tax specialists Nick Gianou and Sarah Beth Rizzo, both of whom are based out of the Chicago office and frequently advise on tax planning matters associated with REIT transactions.

Practice head(s):

David Goldschmidt; Gregg Noel; David Polster; Harvey Uris

Other key lawyers:

Nick Gianou; Sarah Beth Rizzo

Sullivan & Worcester LLP

High-value transactional work is the key focus for Sullivan & Worcester LLP, with the team vastly experienced in representing a full-range of industry clients, including both public and private REITs, on matters ranging from equity and debt offerings, to financings, joint ventures and corporate M&A. The group draws on its deep bench of attorneys – which is jointly led by Angela Gomes and Brian Hammell  – to frequently act on behalf of industry participants across the property, real estate and mortgage sectors, among others. Ameek Ponda is the key name for tax issues- as director of the firm’s tax department he specializes in designing REIT transactions and financial instruments, alongside cross-border financings and M&A. John Steiner is also a key name in the team. All lawyers mentioned are in Boston.

Practice head(s):

Angela Gomes; Brian Hammell

Other key lawyers:

Ameek Ponda; John Steiner

Key clients

American Tower Corporation


Iron Mountain Incorporated

Industrial Logistics Properties Trust

Service Properties Trust

Office Properties Income Trust

Manulife US REIT

Diversified Healthcare Trust

Seven Hills Realty Trust

Manhattan Bridge Capital

Mobile Infrastructure Trust

Mobile Infrastructure Corporation

Work highlights

  • Represented American Tower Corporation in its acquisition of CoreSite Realty Corporation, for $170 per share in cash.
  • Represented Industrial Logistics Properties Trust in its acquisition of Monmouth Real Estate Investment Corporation.
  • Represented Diversified Healthcare Trust in the formation of a $703 million joint venture for 10 properties in DHC’s Office Portfolio segment with two global institutional investors.

Venable LLP

Venable LLP remains notable for its deep expertise in matters of Maryland law, with an impressive track record for offering advice to the percentage of publicly traded REITs organized under Maryland law on a full-suite of matters including IPOs, stock and debt offerings, mergers and acquisitions, spin-offs, and other transactions. The group is headed up James Hanks, while Patricia McGowan  maintains her practice’s emphasis on Maryland corporation law as it intersects with REITs. Carmen Fonda  is well-versed on capital markets transactions for REITs, whilst Brian Field and Christopher W Pate remain important ports of call for specific, complex questions of Maryland corporation law. Former co-chair Sharon Kroupa  retired from the firm in 2022. All attorneys mentioned are in Baltimore.

Practice head(s):

James Hanks

Other key lawyers:

Patricia McGowan; Carmen Fonda; Brian Field; Christopher W Pate


‘Venable is expert in its knowledge of the relevant MD statutes but equally commercial in giving advice. They aren’t solely academic in their approach, the way some local counsel can be. They apply commercial realities to their advice.’

‘The Venable team knows Maryland law as it relates to REIT corporate governance inside and out. Members of the team literally wrote much of it. By virtue of their expertise, they have seen every variety of REIT transactions and can give guidance on market terms as well as opining on legal issues. There is no better firm to advise on matters particular to Maryland REITs.’

‘The Venable REIT practice, lead by Jim Hanks, is extraordinary in their ability to work very well with other law firms and provide clear and helpful guidance, particularly guidance on how Maryland law differs from other jurisdictions, such as Delaware. There is no better firm to have as co-counsel as Venable. They are real and extremely helpful partners.’

‘Lead by Jim Hanks, the lawyers at Venable are all very smart, very diligent, very constructive and practical and most importantly very eager to help not only their clients, but also their co-counsel. They are very good team players. It is always a pleasure to work alongside them in any deal. The corporate and real estate lawyers also work very well with their other groups, and are able to problem-solve all aspects of a deal efficiently while achieving the best possible results for their clients.’

Key clients

Rexford Industrial Realty

Alexandria Real Estate Equities

Essential Properties Realty Trust

CIM Real Estate Finance Trust

Kimco Realty Corporation

Digital Realty Trust

SmartStop Self Storage REIT


Extra Space Storage

Arbor Realty Trust

Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP

Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP draws from its deep bench of real estate, private equity and funds, finance and tax attorneys to advise issuers and underwriters on complex REIT transactions.Key areas of expertise for the team include public and private REIT offerings, including IPOs, secondary and follow-on offerings, private placements of debt and equity, and public issuances of debt . The practice is led by Evan Levy, who focuses on complex real estate transactions, and Philip Rosen, who is experienced in high-value REIT deals. Former co-head Michael Bond  remains a key member of the team for commercial lending transactions, and Jannelle Seales focuses her practice on M&A, joint ventures and restructurings. All lawyers mentioned are in New York.

Practice head(s):

Evan Levy; Philip Rosen

Other key lawyers:

Michael Bond; David Levy; Jannelle Seales

Key clients

Amherst Holdings

Ashford Hospitality Trust


Brookfield Asset Management

Brookfield Property REIT

CBL & Associates Properties

Colony Capital

Front Yard Residential Corporation

GS Infrastructure Partners

Guggenheim Securities

Iron Mountain Incorporated

Island Capital Group

JZ Capital Partners

King Street Capital

Lexington Hotel

Lineage Logistics

MGM Resorts International

Monarch Alternative Capital

Oxford Properties Group

Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan

Work highlights

  • Advised MGM Resorts International in its $17.2 billion sale of MGM Growth Properties LLC.
  • Advised Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan in the formation of Tamarack Timberlands, LLC, a private REIT, and Tamarack Timberlands’ subsequent acquisition of 870 thousand acres of United States Timberlands.
  • Advising JZ Capital Partners in the approximately $1 billion liquidation of a series of investment partnerships that owned, through private REITs, properties in Brooklyn and Miami.

Ballard Spahr LLP

Ballard Spahr LLP offers an experienced team that advises both public and private REITs on range of matters comprising complex securities, corporate, tax, real estate and bankruptcy issues. Baltimore’s Douglas Fox advises private and public entities, whilst Craig Ganz splits his time between the Los Angeles and Phoenix offices and advises on banking, financial and lending issues. The group is also well-placed to advise on specific matters of Maryland corporation law – Charles Moran is a key name here. Other important names in the department include real estate specialist Wendi Kotzen in Pennsylvania and ‘efficient and effective‘ counsel Thomas Bashore. Lawyers are in Baltimore unless otherwise stated.

Practice head(s):

Nathan Seiler; Douglas Fox; Craig Solomon Ganz; Wendi Kotzen; Charles Moran

Other key lawyers:

Thomas Bashore


‘Ballard provides efficient, quick and sage advice on all aspects of Maryland corporate law – often in high stress situations such as M&A. They have demonstrated very imaginative solutions to issues, time and time again.’

‘I work primarily and over many years with Charles Moran and Douglas Fox.’

The team is incredible responsive and knowledgeable. It has great insight into the REIT market as it advises so many Maryland REITs.

Tad Bashore is efficient and effective. He has an incredible knowledge of the market and what is happening.

Key clients

Healthpeak Properties

Kilroy Realty Corporation

SL Green Realty

LTC Properties

Veris Residential

Spirit Realty Capital

Agree Realty Corporation

Orion Office REIT

Four Corners Property Trust

RPT Realty

City Office REIT

Broadstone Net Lease

Equity Commonwealth

Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP

The ‘technically sound’ and ‘very diligent’ team at Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP remains active on a full-range of mandates, representing under-writers and issuers in high-value IPOs, alongside a successful record in public M&A and capital markets transactions. Washington DC-based practice leader and corporate partner Stuart Barr focuses on M&A and capital markets transactions, and is a key contact for the global financial institutions that comprise the group’s client list. Also working out of DC, tax partner Cameron Cosby advises on the tax implications of a full-range of transactions in the space. Philip Richter and Libin Zhang are key contacts in the New York office.

Practice head(s):

Stuart Barr

Other key lawyers:

Cameron Cosby; Libin Zhang; Philip Richter


‘In my over 30 years in real estate tax, I have not had better service. They provide practical and economical advice. They look for easy solutions. They are extremely responsive.’

‘Cameron Cosby provides outstanding practical and economical advice. He is extremely responsive and easy to work with.’

‘Very technically sound. Have great grasp of the law and very diligent. Dedicate the right level of resources to an assignment and are focused on delivering thoughtful and differentiated answers to tough questions.’

Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP

Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP‘s capital markets-focused group is highly active across both the equity and mortgage sectors. IPOs, rule 144A equity offerings and M&A on behalf of both public and private REITs are key focuses for the team, which is praised for its ‘deep and broad knowledge of REIT structures‘. George Howell and David Wright  co-lead the department, whilst Houston’s James Davidson is an expert on IPOs and SEC compliance. Completing the leadership team, Washington DC's Robert K. Smith  is an important port of call on the capital markets side, whilst Kendal Sibley focuses on tax issues arising out of equity and mortgage REITs. Lawyers are in Richmond unless otherwise stated.

Practice head(s):

George Howell; David Wright; Robert K. Smith; Kendal A. Sibley

Other key lawyers:

James Davidson


‘The team has a deep and broad knowledge of the REIT structure and offers counsel on tax, SEC, and governance matters that is second to none. Their counsel provides practical solutions that are the best fit for our organization. The team is nimble and ensures that we comply with REIT requirements and excel within the REIT framework.’

‘Kendal Sibley is widely recognized and the pre-eminent authority on the REIT structure in the U.S. Kendal’s advice is always spot, providing the best solution for our success.’

‘James Davidson is well versed in publicly traded REITs and consistently provides sound and practical guidance, helping us navigate the compliance environment necessitated by the REIT structure.’

‘Hunton’s REIT team is one of the best in the country, with dedicated REIT capital markets lawyers who live and breathe REITs. That is very important for a small cap REIT like ours because we need the specialized advice.’

‘Jim Davidson is the main REIT capital markets partner we have worked with. He is very experienced, knowledgeable and, most importantly, super practical with his advice and approach to securities law issues. He is really the best capital markets counsel you can get in the country as a public REIT.

‘Kendal Sibley is our main REIT tax partner at Hunton. She is as good as any REIT tax lawyer in the country. You can get her on the phone and ask her about the most complicated REIT structuring issue and she will get you concise, practical and clear answers in seconds. She is a trusted advisor for the most complicated and critical tax issues for us.’

Key clients

Healthcare Realty Trust Incorporated

Industrial Logistics Properties Trust

Annaly Capital Management

NewLake Capital Partners

Capstead Mortgage Corporation

Rexford Industrial Realty

Summit Hotel Properties

Sun Communities

Agree Realty

Pebblebrook Hotel Trust

Arbor Realty Trust

Chimera Investment Corporation

TPG RE Finance Trust

ACRES Commercial Realty

Postal Realty Trust

AG Mortgage Investment Trust

NexPoint Real Estate Finance

Alpine Income Property Trust

Arlington Asset Investment

Pretium Partners

Mayer Brown

The ‘very experienced’ team at Mayer Brown represents REITS, large-scale investment funds and other vehicles in M&A, financings and corporate activity, alongside standout expertise in private placements and public offerings, alongside securitizations, highly-structured finance transactions and regulatory issues. Anna Pinedo leads the group from New York and is also co-leader of the global capital markets practice, focusing on complex REITs financing transactions. David Freed and Brian Hirshberg are key partners in the same office, specialising in equity and mortgage REITs, and registered and unregistered securities offerings, respectively. In Chicago, Haukur Gudmundsson is a key name.

Practice head(s):

Anna Pinedo

Other key lawyers:

David Freed; Brian Hirshberg; Haukur Gudmunsson


‘Very experienced REIT team with excellent command of the capital markets products respective to the industry.’

‘Extremely knowledgeable, and always willing to spend the time.’

Key clients

Redwood Trust


Gaea Real Estate Corp.

Global Net Lease

Great Ajax Corp.

ARMOUR Residential REIT

New York Mortgage Trust

CBRM Realty

Dynex Capital

Lument Finance Trust

Post Brothers Holding

Innovatus Capital Partners

Work highlights

  • Advised Prologis on over $1.5 billion in offerings over the reporting period, and as issuer on its shelf takedown of $650 million 4.625% Notes due 2033.
  • Advised New York Mortgage Trust on its inaugural $287 million rated securitization of re-performing mortgage loans, and first ever use of a sub-REIT structure; on a $225 million securitization of Mortgage-Backed Notes.
  • Advised Redwood Trust in its acquisition of Riverbend Funding.

Morris, Manning & Martin, LLP

‘Excellent attorney’ Lauren Provost leads the practice group at Morris, Manning & Martin, LLP, which has demonstrable transactional experience in the space across the full range of real estate asset classes, receiving mandates spanning complex equity and debt investments, private and public equity offerings, UPREIT transactions, restructurings, and M&As. Seth Weiner is a key name for corporate finance, while Washington DC's Aresh Homayoun focuses on the tax aspects of REIT transactions. Mark Stern is a key name to note at associate level. All lawyers mentioned are in Atlanta unless otherwise stated.

Practice head(s):

Lauren Prevost

Other key lawyers:

Mark Stern; Seth Weiner; Aresh Homayoun


‘Great collaboration amongst attorneys in the firm; reasonable billing; knowledgeable and a pleasure to work with.’

‘Lauren Prevost and Seth Weiner are excellent attorneys, with prompt attention to detail and sensitivity for a client’s timelines. Their team’s knowledge of all legal matters facing non-traded REITs is superb.’

Key clients

CIM Real Estate Finance Trust

American Healthcare REIT


RealtyMogul Income REIT

RealtyMogul Apartment Growth REIT

Brookfield Asset Management

Washington Real Estate Investment Trust (WashREIT)

Paul Hastings LLP

Paul Hastings LLP represents both public and private companies, underwriters and investors in equity and debt securities offerings. The group’s deal flow includes both domestic and international work, including IPOs, follow-on offerings, rule 144A offerings, PIPEs and other private placements. M&A, joint ventures and REIT-specific lending issues are other important pillars of the group’s practice. Chris DeCresce  heads the team from New York office, which also features Yariv Katz , a securities and capital markets expert who has demonstrable experience advising major REITs, with public and private offerings of equity and debt securities key elements of his workload. Pablo Clarke joined the team from Latham & Watkins LLP in May 2022, residing in the firm’s Los Angeles office.

Practice head(s):

Chris DeCresce

Other key lawyers:

Yariv Katz; Pablo Clarke

Key clients


BMO Capital Markets

BofA Securities


Credit Suisse

Goldman, Sachs & Co.

J.P. Morgan

Morgan Stanley

RBC Capital Markets

Wells Fargo Securities

American Homes 4 Rent

Cedar Realty Trust Partnership

Eagle Hospitality REIT

Lexington Realty Trust

Watermark Lodging Trust

Prospect Ridge

Work highlights

  • Advised the underwriters in connection with Sun Communities, Inc.’s USD745 million public offering of common stock and concurrent forward sales agreements with Citibank.
  • Advised Watermark Lodging Trust, a publicly traded REIT, in respect of its acquisition by private real estate funds owned by Brookfield Asset Management for a total consideration of USD3.8 billion.

Vinson & Elkins LLP

Vinson & Elkins LLP advises clients in a diverse range of asset classes owned and financed through REIT structures, advising on corporate and regulatory issues, REIT formation and capital market transactions, both public and private offerings of equity and debt securities, restructurings, and both UPREIT and DownREIT structures. Richmond's Daniel LeBey jointly chairs the practice in conjunction with tax specialist Chris Mangin. Other key contacts include Gregory Cope in, who advises REITs at every stage of their life-cycles, and corporate finance expert Chris Green. Lawyers are in Washington DC unless otherwise stated.

Practice head(s):

Daniel LeBey; Chris Mangin

Other key lawyers:

Gregory Cope; Chris Green


‘Timely, consistent performers.’

‘Daniel LeBay is exceptional.’

Key clients

Alpine Income Property Trust

Bimini Capital Management

Bluerock Residential Growth REIT

BofA Securities

Credit Suisse Securities (USA)

CTO Realty Growth

Deutsche Bank Securities, Inc.

Digital Colony Acquisitions

Ellington Financial Inc. / Ellington Residential Mortgage REIT

Flagship Healthcare Properties

Global Medical REIT

Mercury Trust

Morgan Stanley & Co

New York Mortgage Trust

Orchid Island Capital

Preferred Apartment Advisors

Preferred Apartment Communities

Stifel, Nicolaus & Company

TPG Re Finance Trust

Wells Fargo Securities

WPT Industrial Real Estate Investment Trust

Work highlights

  • Advised WPT Industrial Real Estate Investment Trust in its $3.1 billion sale to Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust.
  • Advised Preferred Apartment Communities in its $5.8 billion acquisition by Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust, Inc.
  • Advised Bluerock Residential Growth REIT in its $3.6 billion acquisition by affiliates of Blackstone Real Estate.

Winston & Strawn LLP

Integrated into the firm’s wider capital markets practice group, the team at Winston & Strawn LLP is jointly led by capital markets and corporate governance expert Charlie Haag and Bryan Goolsby  who dedicates a vast proportion of his practice to the representation of public and private REITs. Under the pair’s stewardship, the team acts on behalf of real estate operating companies, including private, non-listed and public REITs, alongside business development companies, on a diverse range of mandates including initial and follow-on public offerings of equity and debt securities, stock exchange compliance, corporate governance, tax structuring and UPREIT and DownREIT structures, among other issues. Key partner Kenneth Betts and Chicago-based real estate practice chair Andrew White are other important points of contact within the team. All lawyers mentioned are in Dallas unless otherwise specified.

Practice head(s):

Bryan Goolsby; Charlie Haag

Other key lawyers:

Andrew White; Kenneth Betts

Key clients

Cypress REIT

Federal Realty


NexPoint Advisors

NexPoint Hospitality Trust

Plymouth Industrial REIT


Spirit Realty Capital


VineBrook Homes Trust

NexPoint Residential Trust

NexPoint Real Estate Finance

Work highlights

  • Represented VineBrook Homes Trust, Inc. in connection with its Form 10 to register shares of Class A common stock, par value $0.01 per share.
  • Represented NexPoint Real Estate Finance in connection with its Form S-3 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission using a “shelf” registration process allowing NREF to offer to sell up to an aggregate of $500,000,000 of common stock, preferred stock, warrants and debt securities in one or more primary offerings. T
  • Represented NexPoint Diversified Real Estate Trust in connection with the deregistration of NXDT under section 8(f) of the Investment Company Act of 1940.