Overview

Listed for the past nine years as one of the country’s top ten tax lawyers by United States Lawyer Rankings, Ms. Halchak is also regularly selected in at least four categories in Best Lawyers®. She is also regularly selected to the New Jersey Super Lawyers list in the Mergers & Acquisitions category. Her practice is principally transactional, with a concentration in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance and compliance, leveraged leasing, corporate, and compensation counseling. She handles a wide variety of business transactions, including U.S. and foreign multi-party acquisitions, divestitures, and financings. Ms. Halchak also has significant experience counseling public and private companies, and their Boards of Directors, on governance and regulatory matters, and structuring compensation packages including tax-deferral structures, equity and equity-based incentive plans, and other benefit plans, and executive and employer protections on a change of control.

FOCUS AREAS

Ms. Halchak has an extensive practice in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, leveraged leasing and divestitures, representing a diverse range of domestic and international clients from early stage and mid-size to larger multi-nationals. She has significant experience leading multi-disciplinary attorney and business teams in structuring, negotiating, and closing these complex business transactions. In some cases, the clients engaged in these transactions are the same clients that Ms. Halchak has counseled for many years on all aspects of their businesses (See, Ongoing Business Counseling, below). She is highly respected for her in-depth understanding of each client’s business model and strategy. This makes her a critical player in each of these transactions from their early stages through the post-closing integration process.

Ms. Halchak counsels companies and their Board of Directors on the full range of governance issues, including fiduciary duties, risk management, conflicts of interest, and legislative and regulatory compliance. She has been engaged by Boards and their special committees to provide counseling in connection with investigations of potential defalcation of senior management as well as irregularities in corporate practices of target entities. She also counsels Board, Board committees and senior management regarding a broad range of matters, corporate governance, disclosure and regulatory matters as well as on structuring compensation packages, including tax-deferral structures, equity and equity-based incentive plans, and other benefit plans and executive and employer protections on a change of control.

Ms. Halchak acts as “in-house” counsel for numerous clients on a broad range of corporate and transactional matters and issues critical to their day-to-day operations, including contract preparation, negotiation and review, tax, real estate, and employment. In connection with this representation, she directs and supervises numerous attorneys from many practice areas throughout the firm. She developed a niche practice as “general counsel” for many privately-held companies with annual revenues ranging from $100 million to $600 million, in connection with all company matters, including corporate, governance, mergers and acquisitions, lending, employment, environmental, and real estate, often beginning this representation in the very early stage of a company’s development and continuing through the successful execution of the appropriate exit strategy.

From 2000-2009, Ms. Halchak was a member of the Boards of Attorneys’ Liability Assurance Society, Inc. and Attorneys’ Liability Assurance Society Ltd. (Bermuda) (collectively, “ALAS” or the “Company”). ALAS is the world’s largest lawyer-owned mutual insurance company, with a membership of 245 firms and approximately 59,000 lawyers headquartered in 46 states and the District of Columbia. The Company was founded in 1979 to provide quality law firms with a stable source of insurance coverage and a level of service that they could not find in the commercial marketplace. Today, the Company has total assets in excess of $2 billion. During her tenure on the Board, Ms. Halchak was a member of its Audit Committee, which she chaired, as well as its Nominating, Compensation & Governance Committee. She assisted with Sarbanes-Oxley compliance, Board and individual director evaluations, director selection, and compensation. Ms. Halchak is an alumna of the DirectWomen Board Institute, one of only 20 women chosen in 2008. An initiative of the American Bar Association and Catalyst, DirectWomen is the only program specifically designed to identify, develop, and support a select group of accomplished women attorneys to provide directors needed by the boards of publicly-held U.S. companies. The group works to increase diversity on corporate boards by providing qualified women as candidates to leaders in the business world. Ms. Halchak continues her important work relating to corporate boards as a member of the Advisory Council of the National Association of Corporate Directors’ New Jersey Chapter.

Education

  • New York University School of Law (LL.M.)
  • Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law (J.D.)
  • Marywood College (now Marywood University) (B.A., cum laude)
    • Delta Epsilon Sigma
    • Kappa Gamma Pi

Professional Activities

Attorneys’ Liability Assurance Society (Bermuda) Ltd. and Attorneys’ Liability Assurance Society, Inc.
Boards of Directors, 2000-2009
Chair, Audit Committee, 2006-2009
Nominating, Compensation, and Governance Committee
Enterprise Risk Management Committee
Reinsurance Committee
Executive Committee

National Association of Corporate Directors, New Jersey Chapter
Advisory Board

New Jersey State Bar Association
Corporate and Business Law Section
Chair, Taxation Section, 1997-1998

American Bar Association
Business Law Section, Committee on Negotiated Acquisitions

Essex County Bar Association

New Jersey Supreme Court Committee on the Tax Court, 1998-2002

Professional Admissions

  • State of New Jersey
  • State of New York
  • Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (Non-Resident Active)
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • United States District Court for the District of New Jersey
  • United States Tax Court

Publications & Features

NEWSROOM

Listed in United States Lawyer Rankings, Nation's Top 10 Tax Lawyers, 2008-2018

Listed in Best Lawyers®
Corporate Governance and Compliance Law, 2008-2019
Corporate, 2003-2019
Mergers & Acquisitions Law, 2003-2005; 2009-2019
Tax Law, 2006-2019
Securities Law, 2003-2005

Selected to New Jersey Super Lawyers list, Mergers & Acquisitions

AV® Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell

Selected to the Morris/Essex Health & Life magazine's "Essex County Top Lawyers" list, Tax Law, 2018

Named to the 2008 Class of the DirectWomen Board Institute

Named one of New Jersey's "Best 50 Women in Business" by NJBIZ, 2008

Named as one of the "The Most Powerful Women in New Jersey Business," by the Star Ledger, September 17, 2006

No aspect of this advertisement has been approved by the Supreme Court of New Jersey. A description of the selection process methodology for the awards referenced is available at gibbonslaw.com/awards/.

All Events