Wendi Kotzen

Wendi L. Kotzen


Wendi L. Kotzen is a member of the Real Estate Department and the Practice Leader of Ballard Spahr’s Tax Group. Her practice focuses on tax law, including federal, state and local taxation of individuals, corporations, and partnerships. Ms. Kotzen advises clients on the taxation of all types of real estate transactions, has an extensive background in Pennsylvania and Philadelphia realty transfer tax planning, and advises clients in connection with mergers and acquisitions. She provides tax advice in connection with labor and other litigation matters, and she represents clients before federal, state, and local agencies contesting proposed tax adjustments. Also, Ms. Kotzen has an extensive background in working with REITs, real estate partnerships (both for developers and investors), leasing transactions, sale-leasebacks, Pennsylvania state tax incentives, structuring like-kind exchanges (forward, reverse, and TIC exchanges), structuring qualified opportunity zone deals, and workouts.

Wendi represents clients before federal, state, and local tax agencies contesting proposed adjustments and in connection with obtaining rulings on tax issues. She provides tax advice in labor and other litigation matters and withholding tax issues. She also regularly advises on Pennsylvania state and local tax planning and opportunities. Wendi has focused on the new Qualified Opportunity Zone tax incentive to assist clients to form and structure qualified opportunity funds. She co-leads the firm's Qualified Opportunity Zones Team and Exempt Organizations Team.

Professional Highlights

Professional Activities

Philadelphia Bar Association, past Chair (2000-2001), Tax Section; past Chair, Tax Section State and Local Tax Committee (2005-2006)

American College of Tax Counsel, elected member

CRE® (Counselors of Real Estate), member

Mayor's Task Force on Tax Policy & Economic Competitiveness, appointee of Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter, 2009

Philadelphia Tax Supper Club, past President

Recognition & Accomplishments

Chambers USA, tax law, (Pennsylvania), 2016-2024

The Legal 500, Real Estate - Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs), 2021-2023

The Best Lawyers in America, tax law, 2005-2024; "Lawyer of the Year," Tax Law (Philadelphia), 2020

Speaking Engagements

Panelist, "Qualified Opportunity Zones," Ballard Spahr webinar, Philadelphia, May 22, 2019

Panelist, "Deconstructing the Opportunity Zones incentive (OZ) – an A to Z guide," iGlobal Forum's Opportunity Zones Investments Dealmakers Meeting, February 21, 2019

Panelist, "Structuring Investment Funds for Qualified Opportunity Zones: Maximizing Tax Benefits and Preserving Flexibility," Strafford webinar, December 19, 2018


 "Choice of Entity in Pennsylvania," Ballard Spahr online article, August 2012

Co-author, "Disregarded Entities Are Now Responsible for Their Own Employment Taxes," Practical U.S./Domestic Tax Strategies, WorldTrade Executive, Inc., July 2009

Co-author, "Tax Shelter Disclosure and List Maintenance Rules," The Practical Tax Lawyer, Vol. 19, No. 3, 2005

Co-author, "The REIT Transaction: Strategies and Hints (An Update)," ALI-ABA, 2003



George Washington University Law School (J.D. 1981, with honors)

New York University School of Law (LL.M., taxation, 1982)

University of Pennsylvania (B.A., magna cum laude, 1978)



New Jersey