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Janis L. Cowhey Esq.

Partner - Tax & Business
Watch and Money
 
750 3rd Avenue
11th Floor
New York, NY 10017

212.485.5660
janis.cowhey@marcumllp.com
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Janis Cowhey is a Partner in the Firm's New York City office. She is a member of its Trusts and Estates Practice Group and the Co-Leader of its Modern Family & LGBT Services Practice Group. Her focus is on complex estate, gift and income tax planning; estate and trust administration; planning for same sex couples and unmarried couples; individual and fiduciary tax compliance; and providing corporate counsel to clients.

Ms. Cowhey has refined a broad range of effective estate planning tools including QPRTs, GRATs, SLATs, CRUTs, CLATs, NIMCRUTs and IDGTs. She works with high-net-worth individuals and families to assist them in developing comprehensive estate plans that minimize taxes while tatamountly providing for their inheritance scheme.

Ms. Cowhey has developed an expertise in working with domestic partners and non-traditional families including same sex married couples and unmarried couples. She provides income tax planning as well as tax return compliance including filing amended returns based on the recent Supreme Court ruling in Windsor. She assists LGBT individuals, couples and families navigate through the complex and rapidly changing tax and legal landscape of estate, gift and income tax planning.

Ms. Cowhey works closely with owners of closely-held businesses and start-up companies. She advises clients on business strategies, succession planning, sale/purchase of their business, shareholder agreements and operating agreements.

Ms. Cowhey handles trust and estate administration and acts as the fiduciary's trusted advisor handling all aspects of the process from inception to distribution. She prepares Court ordered as well as informal trust and estate accountings. She guides families and fiduciaries through the complex administration process.

Prior to joining the Firm in 2007, Ms. Cowhey was with a publicly-traded professional services company. She frequently lectures on topics related to estate and gift tax issues; estate planning strategies; and LGBT estate and income tax issues. She has appeared on TV and quoted in print media including the New York Times, as an expert on LGBT issues.

Professional & Civic Affiliations
  • New York State Bar Association, Trusts & Estates Section
  • New York City Bar Association, Member of LGBT Rights Committee
  • New York City Bar Association, Former Estate & Gift Tax Committee
  • Florida Bar Association
  • District of Columbia Bar Association
Articles, Seminars & Presentations
  • Same Sex Marriages: What You Need to Know in a Rapidly Changing Landscape
  • Tax & Legal Implications for Same Sex Couples After Windsor
  • Having the "Talk" With Your Company's Owner Regarding Succession Planning
  • LGBT Panel - Same Sex Couples: Tax & Estate Planning Considerations
  • The New Estate & Gift Tax Legislation
  • Estate Planning 101
  • Interest Rates & Effects on Planning
  • The 709 Minefield
  • Shareholders Agreements, The Good, The Band & The Ugly
  • Income Taxation of Trusts & Estates
Subject Matter Expertise

Estate & Gift Planning
Modern Family & LGBT Services
Estate & Trust Administration
Individual & Fiduciary Tax Compliance
Business Transactions

Practice Focus

High-Net-Worth Individuals & Families
Same Sex Couples
Unmarried Couples
Closely-Held Business Owners
Start-Up Companies

Education

Juris Doctor
St. John´s University, School of Law

Bachelor of Arts, Mathematics
State University of New York at Binghamton

Related Insights & News


Partner Janis Cowhey discusses the new tax treatment of mortgage interest, with Bloomberg News.

 

There are plenty of reasons to get married. Your taxes may not be one of them. Some couples - generally those with one person who ....


Tax Partner Janis Cowhey talked with Forbes about the importance for unmarried couples living together to plan for how expenses will be handled.

 

Shacking up before marriage is the new normal: more than 65 percent of first marriages today start out with the couple living together, according to ....


Consumer Reports quoted Partner Janis Cowhey in an article about how same-sex marriage has changed couples' finances.

 

When the Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage nationwide on June 26 of last year, many others also got access to financial benefits that only heterosexual ....


Long Island Business News featured Tax & Business Services Partner Janis Cowhey in an article about business succession planning.

 

When people work hard for decades to build and grow a business, often their dearest ambition is for one or more of their children to ....


Janis Cowhey, Co-Leader of the Modern Family & LGBT Services Group, Quoted in Financial Advisor Article, "Supreme Court Rulings' Impact On Tax Planning."

 

Some recent high-profile U.S. Supreme Court decisions have clarified the tax situations for many clients of financial advisors.


Janis Cowhey, Modern Family & LGBT Services Group Co-Leader, Interviewed on PBS NewsHour Segment, "More LGBT Weddings? More Wedding Cakes!"

 

We have got accountants who need to do tax returns, maybe amended tax returns, maybe review past tax returns. And we have got lawyers who ....


Janis Cowhey, Modern Family & LGBT Services Group Co-Leader, Interviewed on NY1 News Segment, "Same-Sex Marriage Ruling Brings Changes to Tax, Estate Planning."

 

The recent Supreme Court decision that legalized same sex marriage nationwide also made it a lot easier for those married couples to file their taxes.


Modern Family & LGBT Services Group Co-Leaders Nanette Lee Miller and Janis Cowhey, Quoted in About.com Article, "Tax Implications of Supreme Court's Same-Sex Marriage Ruling."

 

On June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court ruled that the 14th Amendment of the US Constitution requires all states in the union to license marriage ....


Janis Cowhey, Modern Family & LGBT Services Group Co-Leader, Featured in NPR Article, "The Economic Reality Of The Same-Sex Marriage Ruling."

 

At Pride events in New York City this weekend, the emotional excitement about marriage equality was evident. But many people also were thrilled about the ....


Modern Family & LGBT Services Group Co-Leaders Nanette Lee Miller and Janis Cowhey, Quoted in CPA Practice Advisor Article, "Tax and Financial Implications of the Supreme Court's Ruling on Marriage Equality."

 

Tax and Estate Planning experts from the Modern Family & LGBT Services Practice group at Marcum LLP responded to the financial implications of today's U.S. ....


Janis Cowhey, Modern Family & LGBT Services Group Co-Leader, Interviewed by TheStreet.com, "Supreme Court Ruling on Gay Marriage to Impact Businesses, Individuals."

 

There are financial implications for individuals and businesses following the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling that legalizes same-sex marriage nationwide. Janice Cowhey, a partner at Marcum, ....


Janis Cowhey, Modern Family & LGBT Services Group Co-Leader, Featured in Marketplace Article, "The Financials of Same-Sex Marriage."

 

The Supreme Court ruling that same-sex couples have a right to marry could bring some big financial changes.


Janis Cowhey, Co-Leader of the Modern Family & LGBT Services Group, Quoted in CNBC Article, "Same-Sex Marriage Ruling Levels Financial Playing Field."

 

The Supreme Court today delivered a historic victory for gay rights, ruling 5 to 4 that the Constitution requires that same-sex couples be allowed to ....


Janis Cowhey, Co-Leader of the Modern Family & LGBT Services Group, Quoted in Bloomberg Article, "Supreme Court Marriage Ruling Unties Couples' Personal Finance Knot."

 

The U.S. Supreme Court's decision to legalize same-sex marriage nationwide will remove tax and personal-finance headaches that have bedeviled gay couples.


Janis Cowhey, Co-Leader of the Modern Family & LGBT Services Group, Quoted in Bloomberg Article, "Marriage Ruling Ends Personal-Finance Confusion for Gay Couples."

 

The Supreme Court's decision to allow same-sex marriage nationwide will remove tax and personal-finance headaches that have bedeviled gay couples.


Financial Implications of Same-Sex Marriage: Marcum's Modern Family & LGBT Tax Experts Respond to US Supreme Court Decision in Obergefell v. Hodges

 

Tax and Estate Planning experts from the Modern Family & LGBT Services Practice group at Marcum LLP responded to the financial implications of today's ....


Nanette Lee Miller, Assurance Services Partners & Janis Cowhey, Tax Services Partner, Co-Leaders of the LGBT Practice Group, Quoted in Law360 Article, "Tax Tips For Same-Sex Couples Awaiting High Court Decision."

 

Marcum Assurance Services Partner Nanette Lee Miller and Tax Partner Janis Cowhey, co-leaders of the Firm's LGBT & Non-Traditional Families Practice group, were quoted in ....


Article by Janis Cowhey, Co-Leader of the LGBT Practice Group and David Glusman, Advisory Services Partner, "'Innocent Spouse' Tax Relief in Same-Sex Married Couples," Featured in New York Law Journal

 

When the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) conducts audits of joint tax returns, whether for same-sex couples or traditional heterosexual couples, the starting assumption of the ....


Janis Cowhey, Co-Leader of the LGBT Practice Group, Quoted in Associated Press Article, "Tax Day Gets Complicated for Same-Sex Couples in States that Don't Recognize Their Marriages."

 

A necessary burden for most Americans, Tax Day is an accounting nightmare for thousands of gay and lesbian couples as they wrestle with the uneven ....


Janis Cowhey, Co-Leader of the LGBT Practice Group, Quoted in Bloomberg BNA 2015 State Tax Outlook Special Report Article, "Filing Uncertainty Remains For Married, Same-Sex Taxpayers in 2015."

 

Although the last two years have brought significant clarity at the state level regarding married, samesex couples' filing status, many same-sex couples will still be ....


Janis Cowhey, Co-Leader of the LGBT Practice Group, Featured in Bloomberg BNA Article, "Filing Uncertainty Remains for Married, Same-Sex Taxpayers in 2015."

 

Although the last two years have brought significant clarity at the state level regarding married, same-sex couples' filing status, many same-sex couples are still unable to ....


Janis Cowhey, Co-Leader of the LGBT Practice Group & Shauna Dell, Tax & Business Services Manager, Quoted in South Florida Business Journal Article, "Tax and Estate Planning Advice for Florida Newlywed Same-Sex Couples."

 

Florida became the 36th state to allow same-sex marriage this week and, with wedding bells ringing, there are a couple of things for newlywed or about-to-be-wed ....


Janis Cowhey, Co-Leader of the LGBT Practice Group, Quoted in South Florida Business Journal Article, "What a Proposed Rule Could Mean for LGBT Couples' Health Coverage."

 

Health care insurers in Florida may have more customers after Jan. 6., when same-sex marriages could become legal in the state.


Janis Cowhey, Co-Leader of the LGBT Practice Group, Quoted in Money's Article, Modern Family Finances, Discussing Tax Filing Options For Same-Sex Couples

 

Since the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act last year, gay spouses in states that have legalized such unions are now entitled ....


Married Same-Sex Couples in 7 More States Now Able to Protect Their Families' Futures

Same-sex couples planning to marry in the states covered by this week´s momentous Supreme Court decision not to hear appeals aimed at preventing such marriages, ....


Janis Cowhey, Co-Leader of the LGBT Practice Group, Quoted in The Washington Post Article, "Civilities: A Lesbian Daughter Fears Here Parents Financially Favor a Straight Sister."

 

At first blush, your question goes to show that LGBT people can be just as petty, small-minded, and entitled� as our heterosexual friends and relatives.


Janis Cowhey, Co-Leader of the LGBT Practice Group, Quoted in Bankrate.com's Retirement Blog Article, "Gay Couples Win More Rights."

 

It has been about a year since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, voiding the federal definition of marriage as ....


Marcum LLP Partners with CNN on Same-Sex Marriage Map

CNN has tapped Marcum LLP to collaborate with the network on an interactive online map depicting the current status of same-sex marriage in the United ....


Same-Sex Marriage: The Financial I Do's and Don'ts - LGBT Tax Advisors from Marcum LLP Offer Tips

Same-sex couples who have married or are considering marriage should be aware of the financial considerations that come with the rings and the related legal ....


Article by Janis Cowhey, LGBT Practice Co-Leader and Portia Rose, LGBT Manager, "The Benefits of Same-Sex Marriage: It's Not Just About The Love Thing," Featured in Philadelphia Gay News

 

Since the Defense of Marriage Act was effectively nullified by the U.S. Supreme Court in June 2013, same-sex couples have been rushing to the altar. ....


LGBT Practice Co-Leader Janis Cowhey, Quoted in Detroit Free Press Article, "Some Same-Sex Married Couples Living In Michigan Have To Prepare Five Tax Returns."

 

Many legally married gay and lesbian couples are delighted by the change in federal income tax rules that treats them like other married couples. But ....


LGBT Practice Co-Leader Janis Cowhey Featured in New York Daily News Article, "Taxing Times for Same Sex Married Couples: What You Need to Know About the New Rules."

 

Same-sex couples who are legally married in states that recognize their marriages - including New York - now have the same federal tax benefits that ....


LGBT Practice Co-Leaders Nanette Lee Miller and Janis Cowhey, Quoted in 10,000 Couples Article, "Experts Respond to Federal Recognition of Michigan Same-Sex Marriages."

 

Today's ruling by the federal government granting full federal recognition to the same-sex marriages performed last week in the State of Michigan carries important tax ....


LGBT Practice Co-Leaders Nanette Lee Miller and Janis Cowhey, Quoted in Reuters Article, "How to Sort Through the Changes for Same-Sex Tax Filers."

 

Married same-sex couples this year will file their U.S. income tax returns just like heterosexual married couples because of the Supreme Court's decision in June ....


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Interviewed in Think Advisor Article, "Honeymoon's Over: Helping Gay Couples Manage 2013 Tax Hikes."

 

Accountant and lawyer Janis Cowhey McDonagh helps same-sex married couples, and all taxpayers, navigate 2013 tax changes.


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Featured in Business Insider Article, "Married Same-Sex Couples Get New Tax Breaks."

 

For the first time ever, married same-sex couples will be required to file federal income taxes as married, either jointly or separately, and will have ....


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Featured in The New York Times Article, "For Same-Sex Marrieds, a Tax Season to Look Back."

 

Tax season doesn't usually stir up emotions about the meaning of family and equal rights. But this year is different, at least for the tens of ....


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Quoted in CNBC.com Article, "What Same-Sex Couples Need to Know About Taxes."

 

Something new, exciting and a bit scary is coming this tax season for some same-sex couples across the country: For the first time, they will ....


LGBT Practice Co-Leaders Nanette Lee Miller and Janis Cowhey, Quoted in The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel Article, "Marcum's LGBT Group Releases Top Tax Planning Tips For Same-Sex Married Couples."

 

The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender (LGBT) Practice group of Marcum LLP, a top national accounting and advisory firm, has released its Top 10 Tax ....


Marcum's Top Tax Tips for Same-Sex Married Couples Featured in Accounting Today Article "Marcum Shares Tax Planning Guide for Same-Sex Couples"

 

Top 100 Firm Marcum LLP’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Practice has released a list of top tax planning tips for married same-sex couples to ....


Article by Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, "2013 Year-End Planning for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Taxpayers" Featured in The National Law Review

 

2013 has been a year of historic change for the LGBT community. The landmark Supreme Court decision in U. S. v. Windsor, decided on June ....


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Featured in The Wall Street Journal Article "New IRA Rules for Same-Sex Married Couples

 

More than three months after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a key portion of the Defense of Marriage Act, known as DOMA, ....


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Featured in CNN Money Article "Many Same-Sex Couples Eligible for Big Tax Refunds"

 

The Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, defined marriage as between a man and a woman, which meant married same-sex couples had to file their ....


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Featured in Long Island Business News Article "DOMA Defeated, Now What?"

 

When same-sex couples marry, their financial future is often on equal footing with their desire to publicly and joyously declare their love as a motivating ....


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Quoted in Forbes.com Article "Feds Work Overtime To Fill Gaps Left By DOMA Ruling"

 

As the July 4 holiday approaches, the Supreme Court justices can enjoy these lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer. Meanwhile, they have given armies of ....


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Interviewed on National Public Radio's "Morning Edition"

 

Janis Cowhey McDonagh, Tax & Business Services Partner, comments about tax filings for same-sex married couples, on National Public Radio’s "Morning Edition".


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Featured on Bloomberg Television's "Bottom Line"

 

Marcum’s Janis Cowhey McDonagh discusses the economic implications of today's Supreme Court rulings on same-sex marriage.


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Quoted in Investment News Article "Cases Affect Planning for Gays"

 

The Supreme Court could throw out the federal law that bans gay marriage as early as today in one of two decisions due from the ....


Nanette Lee Miller, West Coast Partner-In-Charge of Assurance Services and Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner Discuss Practice Profile: Running an LGBT Practice on Accounting Today

 

Marcum’s LGBT practice leaders sat down with managing editor Tamika Cody to discuss some of the inequalities LGBT clients face when trying to file taxes.


Nanette Lee Miller, West Coast Partner-In-Charge of Assurance Services and Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner Discuss Women in Accounting: Breaking The Mold

 

Marcum’s Nanette Lee Miller and Janis Cowhey McDonagh sat down with managing editor Tamika Cody to discuss some of the obstacles women in the accounting ....


Nanette Lee Miller, West Coast Partner-In-Charge of Assurance Services and Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner Discuss Women in Accounting: Where are the Leading Ladies?

 

Marcum’s Nanette Lee Miller and Janis Cowhey McDonagh sat down with managing editor Tamika Cody to discuss some of the obstacles women in the accounting ....


Nanette Lee Miller, West Coast Partner-In-Charge of Assurance Services and Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner Discuss DOMA on Accounting Today Insider

 

The fate of the Defense of Marriage Act, also referred to as DOMA, currently sits in the hands of the Supreme Court. In 2011, the ....


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Quoted in Associated Press Article "Gay Couples Could See Windfalls From Court Action"

 

For Mina Meyer and Sharon Raphael, two women in their 70s who fell in love more than four decades ago and have been married for ....


Marcum's LGBT & Non-Traditional Family Practice Group Featured in AccountingToday Article "Marcum Tracks Same-Sex Marriage Tax Laws by State"

 

Accounting and advisory firm Marcum LLP has introduced an interactive online map that tracks the status of same-sex marriage in each of the 50 U.S. ....


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Quoted in The Washington Times Article "Franchot: Md. Married Gays Can't File Taxes Jointly"

 

Maryland's same-sex couples will soon be allowed to marry, but they won't be allowed to file joint income-tax returns - making Maryland the first state ....


Marcum's LGBT & Non-Traditional Family Practice Group Featured in AccountingToday Article "Supreme Court to Hear DOMA Case with Tax Implications"

 

The Supreme Court has agreed to hear a pair of cases challenging the constitutionality of the federal Defense of Marriage Act and of California's Proposition ....


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Quoted in New York Times' Bucks Blog "Gay Couples May Want to File a Protective Tax Refund Claim"

 

The recent decision by a federal appeals court regarding the Defense of Marriage Act suggests gay couples may want to file something known as a ....


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Quoted in Associated Press Article "Coming Changes in Estate, Gift Taxes Stir 'Frenzy'"

 

Taxes that are largely a concern of the very rich will soon affect far more people unless Congress steps in.


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Quoted in Dow Jones Newswire Article "Property Traps For Gay And Unwed Pairs"

 

Aclient of New York tax attorney Janis CowheyMcDonagh recently found out some of this the hard way.


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Quoted in Financial Advisor Magazine Article "Same-Sex Couples Face Maze of Financial Issues"

 

Because same-sex marriage laws differ depending onjurisdiction, advisors need to get educated on how to navigate the increasinglycomplex financial issues facing the lesbian, gay, bisexual ....


Janis Cowhey, Tax & Business Services Partner, Quoted in SmartMoney Article About "The New Rules of Estate Planning"

 

In the article, Ms. McDonagh says the sudden ability to move as much as $5 million into such vehicles (and the fact that these trusts ....

 
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