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About me

Philip Carstens is a corporate and tax attorney with over 35 years advising clients in formation of corporations, partnerships and limited liability companies.  He has also advised various entities in connection with mergers, reorganizations, acquisitions, and other financial transactions. He is highly experienced in the design and installation of employee stock ownership plans and other plans governed by ERISA.


Phil was selected as a “Best Lawyer” in the Tax category in the 2010 US News & World Report and also listed in The Best Lawyers in America for Tax Law since 1995.  Phil is an active speaker throughout the country on topics ranging from ESOPs to buying and selling businesses.  He is a frequent panel member and contributor appearing before the Seattle chapter of the Association for Corporate Growth in April 2011 and serving as a panelist on an ESOP Panel Presentation, “Strategies for Liquidity and Legacy.”


Mr. Carstens was named Administrative Office Partner for the Spokane office in October 2010 and serves on the firm’s Management Committee.


Practice areas


  1. Tax: 25%
    41 years
  2. Mergers & Acquisitions: 25%
    41 years
  3. Employee Benefits: 25%
    41 years
  4. Corporate & Incorporation: 25%
    41 years

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Contact info

K&L Gates

618 West Riverside Drive Suite 300
Spokane, WA, 99201-5048


IDAuthorized to practice law200311/12/2015
We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
Best Lawyers in AmericaBest Lawyers in America2013
AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review RatedMartindale-Hubbell2013
Best Lawyers in AmericaBest Lawyers in America2012
AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review RatedMartindale-Hubbell2012
Best Lawyers in AmericaBest Lawyers in America2011
AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review RatedMartindale-Hubbell2011
AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review RatedMartindale-Hubbell2010
Best Lawyer - TaxUS News and World Reports2010
Best Lawyers in AmericaBest Lawyers in America2010
Best Lawyers in AmericaBest Lawyers in America2009
AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review RatedMartindale-Hubbell2009
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
Administrative Partner (Spokane)K & L Gates2010 - Present
Management CommiteeK & L Gates2010 - 2013
PartnerK & L Gates2007 - 2013
Managing PartnerLukins & Annis, PS1994 - 1999
PrincipalLukins & Annis1977 - 2006
Association namePosition nameDuration
ESOP Association (NW Chapter)Board of Directors2010 - Present
Washington State Bar Association, Bar Examiners CommitteeFormer Board Member1982 - 1992
Spokane County Bar AssociationMemberN/A
Washington State Bar AssociationMemberN/A
American Bar AssociationMemberN/A
ESOP Association, Legislative and Regulatory CommitteeMemberN/A
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
New York University School of LawTax LawLL.M - Master of Laws (Tax)1974
University of San Francisco School of LawLawJD - Juris Doctor1973
Seattle UniversityN/ABA - Bachelor of Arts1970