Category Archives: Attorneys

SAM Encourages You to Attend LABIC Fireside Chat on March 15, 2018

Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP and SAM attorney Shanita Nicholas encourage you to attend:

LA Black Investors Club 
Fireside Chat Series
Thu, March 15, 2018
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM

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LABIC’s Fireside Chat Series is back! Join them for their first Fireside Chat of 2018 featuring Anna Barber, Managing Director of the Techstars LA Accelerator, and Sky Kelley, CEO & Founder of Avisare.

fireside chat

The Fireside Chat Series features different speakers who will lead a discussion on various issues and topics of interest to entrepreneurs, from venture capital and fundraising to investing and marketing.

Techstars LA focuses on investing in LA area companies in media, entertainment, e-commerce, marketplaces, enterprise SAAS, edtech, cleantech and aerospace. They are particularly interested in diverse founding teams.

Avisare is a platform for companies that want the highest caliber talent in the world. Avisare is an online community of privately invited pre-screened executive level consultants and consulting firms with the skills needed to get results for the jobs or projects posted by businesses on the platform.

For more information visit here.



Six Stubbs Alderton & Markiles’ Attorneys Listed as 2018 Southern California Super Lawyers

Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP is pleased to announce that six lawyers have been named to the 2018 Southern California Super LawyersSuper Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high-degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The patented selection process includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations.

Super Lawyers Magazine features the list and profiles of selected attorneys and is distributed to attorneys in the state or region and the ABA-accredited law school libraries. Super Lawyers is also published as a special section in leading city and regional magazines across the country. Lawyers are selected to a Super Lawyers list in all 50 states and Washington, D.C.

Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP would like to congratulate the following attorneys named to the 2018 Super Lawyers list –

Scott Alderton - Super LawyersScott Alderton is a founding partner of the Firm, Managing Partner, and a member of the Firm’s Executive Committee.  Scott is co-chair of the Firm’s Venture Capital and Emerging Growth Practice Group and chair’s the Firm’s Interactive Entertainment and Video Games Group. Scott advises both public and private clients across a number of industries, including technology, manufacturing and distribution of goods in commerce, finance, the Internet, interactive video games, and new media industries.

Kevin Debre - Super LawyersKevin D. DeBré is the chair of the Firm’s Intellectual Property & Technology Transactions Practice Group.  Kevin advises entrepreneurs and companies that use intellectual property to build their businesses.  Kevin has particular expertise in structuring and negotiating technology commercialization and patent licenses, strategic alliances, research and development collaborations, trademark licensing and brand merchandising agreements and manufacturing, distribution and marketing arrangements.  He also counsels clients on compliance with data security and privacy laws and regulations.

Jeffrey F. GershJeff Gersh - Super Lawyers is a Partner of the Firm. He has litigated, arbitrated, or mediated complex business and commercial matters, for both plaintiffs and defendants, whether individuals, public or private corporations, partnerships, limited liability companies and/or its members, shareholders and partners, involving various types of disputes, including contract matters, trade secrets, intellectual property (trademarks, copyrights and trade dress) negligence and fraud, employment, real estate, license agreements, the apparel and garment industry, and general business matters.

Dan Rozansky - Super Lawyers

Daniel Rozansky is a Partner of the Firm in the Business Litigation Practice. Dan concentrates his practice on entertainment, privacy, First Amendment and complex business and real estate disputes. Dan’s areas of focus are entertainment finance, anti-SLAPP motions, unfair competition, trade secrets, intellectual property, surreptitious tape recording, reality television, profit participation, rights of privacy and publicity, real estate, partnership disputes and First Amendment issues. He represents clients both at the trial and appellate levels in state and federal court on a wide array of issues.

Michael Sherman - Super LawyersMichael Sherman is an accomplished trial lawyer in high-stakes, “bet-the-company” litigation, and has represented both large and early-stage companies as well as entrepreneurs in all facets of business and complex commercial litigation. He has evenly split his litigation practice on both the plaintiff and defense side of cases, has first-chaired numerous trials in complex matters in industries as varied as energy, securities, healthcare, environmental, consumer products, technology, project development/finance, advertising, real estate and apparel, and is highly skilled in class actions and unfair competition law.

Joe Stubbs - Super LawyersJoe Stubbs is a founding partner of the Firm, and a member of the Firm’s Executive Committee. He is co-chair of the Firm’s Venture Capital and Emerging Growth Practice Group, and of the Firm’s Mergers and Acquisitions Practice Group. Joe practices in the areas of corporate and securities law, emphasizing the corporate representation of both publicly-held and privately-held emerging growth and middle-market companies, venture capital and private equity firms, angel investment groups and investment banks.

The official Super Lawyers 2018 publication can be read in its entirety here.

For more information about Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, contact Heidi Hubbeling at or (310) 746-9803.


SAM Attorney John De La Merced Appointed to APABA Board of Governors

Congratulations to Stubbs Alderton & Markiles attorney John De La Merced for his appointment to the Board of Governors for the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Los Angeles County. He was officially sworn in on February 23, 2018 at APABA’s 20th Annual Installation of the Officers & Board of Governors, which featured California Supreme Court Justice Leondra R. Kruger as the keynote speaker.

For more information about the Governing Board, visit here.

John De La MercedJohn R. De La Merced is an associate of the Firm.  His practice focuses on business litigation, which includes commercial and intellectual property disputes.  His experience encompasses all aspects of the litigation process, including drafting operative pleadings and responses, law and motion practice, discovery, mediation, client counseling and assisting in trial.

John currently serves as Treasurer and a member of the board of governors for the Philippine American Bar Association, and will serve as the organization’s President-Elect in 2018 and then President in 2019.  John is also a member of the advisory committee for the St. Thomas More Society of Los Angeles.

For more information about our Business Litigation Practice or questions contact John De La Merced at


SAM Partner Dan Rozansky Featured in Hollywood Reporter

Stubbs Alderton & Markiles’ Partner Dan Rozansky was featured in the Hollywood Reporter in a roundup of Hollywood law firm promotions and hires.

To read the full article visit here.

Dan RozanskyDan concentrates his practice on entertainment, privacy, First Amendment and complex business and real estate disputes. In addition to his diverse litigation experience, Dan also counsels a broad array of clients on developing the best strategies to avoid disputes. For entertainment clients, he regularly reviews television pilots, screenplays and other material in development to assist those clients in identifying and avoiding potential liabilities. Dan’s areas of focus are entertainment finance, anti-SLAPP motions, unfair competition, trade secrets, intellectual property, surreptitious tape recording, reality television, profit participation, rights of privacy and publicity, real estate, partnership disputes and First Amendment issues. He represents clients both at the trial and appellate levels in state and federal court on a wide array of issues.

For more information on our Litigation Practice, contact Dan Rozansky at


SAM Partner Greg Akselrud Featured in CREATV Media’s Digital Media Update

Stubbs Alderton & Markiles’ Partner Greg Akselrud contributed a chapter to Peter Csathy’s new book Media 2.0(18) on Investments and Mergers & Acquisitions. The chapter entitled “Tech & Digital Media Investment and M&A- Issues to Be Considered on Both Sides”  was featured on CREATV Media’s Digital Media Update.

To read the full article visit here. 

Greg AkselrudGreg Akselrud is a founder and partner of the Firm and a member of the Firm’s Executive Committee. He chair’s the Firm’s Internet, Digital Media and Entertainment Practice Group. Greg advises a wide range of public and private clients across a number of industries, including companies in the entertainment, digital media, Internet, technology, consumer electronics and apparel industries. Greg is an Adjunct Professor of Law at Loyola Law School, Los Angeles, teaching Business Planning I: Financing the Start-Up Business and Venture Capital Financing. Greg is the author of Hit Man: The Fourth Circuit’s Mistake in Rice v. Paladin Enters., Inc., 19 Loy. L.A. Ent. L.J. 375 (1999).

To learn more about our Mergers & Acquisitions Practice or  Internet, Digital Media & Entertainment Practice, contact Greg Akselrud at


SAM Attorney Caroline Cherkassky Featured Panelist at UCLA Law School’s “Law & Entrepreneurship” Conference

March 9th, 2018

UCLA School of Law
385 Charles E. Young Drive East
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1476

Located in UCLA’s back yard, the Silicon Beach economy is exploding. This inaugural conference will explore the legal and policy issues faced by more than 500 tech startups, incubators and accelerators as well as companies like Snap. Attend the conference to understand the issues critical to this burgeoning hub of entrepreneurship in West LA and the beach cities of Santa Monica, Playa Vista and Venice.

The Silicon Beach Conference will address three important areas all with a focus on the businesses we see here:  governance, financing and acquisitions. Our governance panel will look at various structural approaches, including dual class stock structures.  The financing panel will explore the SEC’s pro-IPO initiatives as well as the emerging Initial Coin Offering debate. Finally, the panelists will look to the LA and Silicon Beach acquisitions market and how to support and grow M&A in Silicon Beach.

Opening Remarks
Joel Feuer, UCLA School of Law

Corporate Governance and Founder Control
Ken Bertsch, Council of Institutional Investors
David Berger, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
Caroline Cherkassky, Stubbs Alderton & Markiles
Chris Shoff, Latham & Watkins
Moderator: Stephen Bainbridge, UCLA School of Law

Financing of Start-Ups and Emerging Growth Companies
Lona Nallengara, Shearman & Sterling  
Nick Hobson, Cooley
Philippa Bond, Proskauer
Adam Ettinger, Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton
Moderator: James Park, UCLA School of Law

Silicon Beach Acquisitions: Legal and Business Issues
David Hernand, Paul Hastings
Brandon Quartararo, Intrepid Investment Bank
Andrew Erskine, Orrick
Moderator:  Iman Anabtawi, UCLA School of Law

We hope to see you there!




Ascensus Acquires SAM Client Dedicated DB

Dedicated DBStubbs Alderton & Markiles’ represented Dedicated Benefit Services (“Dedicated DB”) in its sale to Ascensus, a technology-enabled service provider. With the acquisition, Ascensus will be able to offer clients access to even more retirement plan experience and expertise while adding another location to its geographic footprint.

To read the full press release, click here.

Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP attorneys representing Dedicated DB in this transaction were Scott Galer and Nick Feldman.

About SAM
Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP is a business law firm with robust mergers and acquisitions, corporate, public securities, entertainment, intellectual property, brand protection and business litigation practice groups focusing on the representation of middle market public and private companies as well as venture backed emerging growth companies, investors, venture capital funds, investment bankers and underwriters. Stubbs Alderton represents clients across a full spectrum of industries, including technology, consumer product, entertainment, digital media, videogame, aerospace, apparel and medical device. Our mission is to provide technically excellent legal services in a consistent, highly-responsive and service-oriented manner with an entrepreneurial and practical business perspective. These principles are the hallmarks of our firm.

For more information on our Mergers & Acquisitions practice, contact Scott Galer at


SAM Encourages You to Attend LABIC Business Pitch Competition

Los Angeles Black Investors Club (LABIC)
Business Pitch Competition
January 25, 2018

Black Business Pitch Competition

Each quarter, LABIC hosts a prize competition that provides an opportunity for entrepreneurs to showcase their innovative products, technologies, or services in particular industries.

LABIC will have its first Black Business Pitch Competition of 2018 on January 25th at Sip & Sonder, located in Downtown Inglewood. Upto 10 finalists will be selected to compete in the live pitch event, where finalists will pitch their products and ideas to a panel of expert judges and compete for amazing prizes. Last quarter’s prizes included free consulting sessions with a top VC fund manager and LABIC partners, a one year subscription to Entrepreneur Magazine, AMEX gift cards, and more!


Sherri Brewer is the Senior Vice President and Chief Retail Officer of OneUnited Bank.  She is dedicated to impacting the lives of youth. Ms. Brewer works with World Impact’s Young Entrepreneur Program (YEP) as a judge of business plans during shark tank like presentations to receive grant funds. She has worked with Los Angeles Educational Partnership by providing High School seniors with resume review services and mock employment interviews. She works with organizations such as Adelante Youth Services (AYS) to provide financial literacy to middle school students. Ms. Brewer serves on the Board of Vox Collegiate Charter School in Watts and serves on the loan committee of Pacific Coast Regional Small Business Development Corporation.

Meggan Oirech is the founder and CEO of CHNO Brands, LLC. CHNO is a startup that curates black-owned products for your everyday life and makes them available in their online store. She is also the recipient of a Madame CJ Walker business award that honored her work with black businesses. She has also developed an algorithm and works with a venture company to build and sell it. A native of Riverside County, she is a gradate of the Art Institute of Orange County.

Demarcus Williams is the Director of Silicon Valley Bank’s Early Stage Practice in Los Angeles. He focuses on guiding entrepreneurs from incorporation through Series A financing and fostering community within Los Angele’s early stage tech ecosystem. Prior to his position at SVB, he was Vice President of Business Strategy at Zealot Networks. He has also served as a financial advisor for Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley Smith Barney. He is a graduate of UC, Irvine.

We hope to see you there!


SAM Expands Leading Business Litigation Practice With the Addition of New Partner Dan Rozansky

​​​Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP, Southern California’s leading business law firm, has announced that Dan Rozansky has joined the firm as a partner in its Sherman Oaks office. Mr. Rozansky will join the Business Litigation practice group.

“Dan is a fantastic addition to our firm” commented Scott Alderton, Managing Partner. “Not only does he augment our litigation practice at a very senior level, which is the fastest growing segment of our firm, he also brings a synergy to our entertainment and digital media practices, which are at the core of our technology expertise. Dan would be a great asset to any firm in the country, and we feel very fortunate that Dan chose to join Stubbs Alderton & Markiles.”

Mr. Rozansky concentrates his litigation practice on entertainment, privacy, First Amendment and complex business and real estate disputes. Recognized as an industry leader, Dan has been listed as a top entertainment and media litigator in Chambers USA (2011-2016). In 2013, 2014, and 2016, he as featured in Variety’s “Legal Impact Report,” which names the top attorneys who are making a significant impact in the entertainment industry. Prior to joining Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, he worked at Jenner & Block’s Los Angeles office.

Dan Rozansky stated, “I am thrilled to be joining the firm. It is rare to find a business law firm of this size with such high quality corporate lawyers and litigators under the same roof. I chose Stubbs Alderton because its technology focus and deep bench of talented attorneys will allow me to continue delivering excellence to my clients.”

To read Dan Rozansky’s full bio, click here.

To view the full press release, visit here.
To view the story on the SFV Business Journal, visit here.

About the Stubbs Alderton & Markiles Business Litigation Practice
​The Firm’s business litigators have significant depth and breadth of resources and a detailed knowledge of clients’ industries and business concerns. As trusted counselors to middle market businesses, and particularly early stage, growth companies and entrepreneurs, we understand that how a company or entrepreneur handles dispute risk oftentimes is the difference between business success and failure. For more information about the Business Litigation practice at Stubbs Alderton, click here.

About Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP
Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP is a business law firm with robust corporate, public securities, mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property and business litigation practice groups focusing on the representation of venture backed emerging growth companies, middle market public companies, large technology and Internet companies, entertainment, video games and digital media companies, investors, venture capital funds, investment bankers and underwriters. The firm’s clients represent the full spectrum of Southern California business with a concentration in the technology, entertainment, video games, apparel, consumer electronics and medical device sectors. The firm’s mission is to provide technically excellent legal services in a consistent, highly-responsive and service-oriented manner with an entrepreneurial and practical business perspective. These principles are the hallmarks of the firm. For more information, please visit

Heidi Hubbeling
​Stubbs Alderton & Markiles, LLP
(310) 746-9803


Individual Tax Reform Act Changes : Michael Shaff

Tax Cuts and Jobs Act In addition to a number of business tax changes, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 (the “Tax Act”) added a number of important changes for individuals as follows.  The changes discussed are not all of the changes for individuals.


  1. The maximum tax bracket has been reduced from 39.6% to 37%. Each bracket has been reduced.
  2. The standard deduction has been increased from $6,500 for an individual and $13,000 filing jointly to $12,000 and $24,000, respectively—meaning you will need $24,000 in itemized deductions in order for itemizing to make sense.
  3. The personal exemption for each taxpayer and dependent has been “suspended” through 2025.
  4. The 3.8% tax on net investment income and the .9% additional Medicare tax on payroll and self-employment income remain intact.
  5. The Obamacare individual mandate was effectively repealed by reducing the applicable rate to zero. There is no compulsion to obtain insurance or to obtain insurance that complies with Obamacare coverage requirements.
  6. Individuals now face a limitation in deducting state and local taxes not incurred in conducting a business or an activity for profit. The non-business state and local tax deduction is now limited to $10,000.
  7. Mortgage interest may only be deducted to the extent that it accrued on $750,000 or less of mortgage loan principal. Interest accrued on debt incurred or contracted to be incurred before December 15, 2017 is not subject to the limitation.  Homeowners will have be very careful before refinancing a mortgage loan. Interest on home equity lines will not be deductible.
  8. The charitable deduction limit has been raised from 50% of adjusted gross income to 60% of adjusted gross income.
  9. There is no longer a charitable deduction for fees paid to a college for athletic event seating rights.
  10. For divorce agreements entered into after 2018, alimony will no longer be deductible by the payor or includible by the recipient.
  11. Miscellaneous itemized deductions, formerly subject to a floor of 2% of adjusted gross income, are now nondeductible.
  12. The exclusion from income for qualified moving expenses is generally repealed except for active duty military personnel.
  13. The child care credit is increased to $2,000 from $1,000, with up to $1,400 per child treated as a refundable credit.
  14. Other than for losses incurred in a federally declared disaster area, the deduction for casualty and theft losses is limited to gains from casualties and thefts. In effect, the deduction is only allowed for casualties in federally declared disaster areas and to shelter insurance recoveries for thefts and casualties.
  15. An individual’s excess business loss is subject to limitations on deductibility.  An excess business loss for the tax year is the excess of aggregate deductions of the taxpayer attributable to the taxpayer’s trades and businesses, over the sum of aggregate gross income or gain of the taxpayer plus a threshold amount. The threshold amount for a tax year is $500,000 for married individuals filing jointly, and $250,000 for other individuals.  Excess business loss is computed after applying the passive loss rules of Section 469.
  16. Qualified equity grants. A qualified equity grant is stock of a corporation that is not publicly traded if the corporation has adopted a plan to distribute options or restricted stock units to at least 80% of its employees.  A qualified employee may elect to defer income attributable to the value of the stock until the earliest of any of the following:

(1)  The first date the qualified stock becomes transferable, including, solely for this purpose, transferable to the employer.

(2)  The date the employee first becomes an “excluded employee” (i.e., an individual: (a) who is one-percent owner of the corporation at any time during the 10 preceding calendar years; (b) who is, or has been at any prior time, the chief executive officer or chief financial officer of the corporation or an individual acting in either capacity; (c) who is a family member of an individual described in (a) or (b); or (d) who has been one of the four highest compensated officers of the corporation for any of the 10 preceding tax years. [This requirement may well limit the availability of the deferral in many cases.]

(3)  the first date on which any stock of the employer becomes readily tradable on an established securities market;

(4)  the date five years after the first date the employee’s right to the stock becomes substantially vested; or

(5)  the date on which the employee revokes his or her election. (Code Sec. 83(i)(1)(B), as amended by Act Sec. 13603(a))

  1. New carried interest rule.  In order to obtain long term capital gain treatment for an interest in a partnership (including an LLC) received for services, the manager must hold the interest for at least three years, not the usual one year.  The new rule applies to partnerships (and LLCs) engaged in acquiring securities, commodities, real estate, cash, options or derivative contracts.
  2. The estate and gift tax unified lifetime exemption for decedents dying in 2018 is increased from $5 million to $11.2 million.  With proper estate planning, a married couple with up to $22.4 million in value in their taxable estates may avoid the federal estate tax. The exemption amount is indexed to increase with inflation. At present, California does not have an estate tax.

Michael Shaff joined the firm in 2011 as Of Counsel. He is chairperson of the Tax Practice Group. Michael specializes in all aspects of federal income taxation. Mr. Shaff has served as a trial attorney with the office of the Chief Counsel of the Internal Revenue Service for three years. Mr. Shaff is certified by the Board of Legal Specialization of the State Bar of California as a specialist in tax law. Mr. Shaff is a past chair of the Tax Section of the Orange County Bar Association. He is co-author of the “Real Estate Investment Trusts Handbook” published annually by West Group.

For more information about our Tax & Estate Planning Practice or questions on how the new Tax Law will affect your business contact Michael Shaff at