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Raul A. Escatel
Senior Partner

Certified Tax Specialist


California State University – Stanislaus
Bachelor of Arts – Psychology & Criminology
University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law
Juris Doctorate
Boston University School of Law
LL. M.

Bar Admissions:

California – 231664

Court Admissions:

United States Tax Court

Contact Information:

E: raul@ascendantllp.com
T: 213.289.0675
F: 213.289.0285

Languages Spoken:


Raul A. Escatel, a former Partner from Alvarado Smith (now Frost Brown Todd), brings extensive experience and close personal attention to the representation of businesses and individuals in a broad range of tax matters, both as an advisor and as an advocate. Raul has an established track record of successfully representing his clients in significant income tax, sales and use tax, and employment tax issues before the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the California Franchise Tax Board (FTB), and various administrative and local taxing agencies. Further, Raul is a Certified Tax Specialist by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization, a qualification of which fewer than 0.2% of all attorneys licensed to practice in California has.

Raul has over a decade of experience as a government tax lawyer and brings first-hand knowledge of the approaches used by the IRS and the FTB. This background informs his representation of clients at the audit stage, administrative appeals, and practice before the tax courts.

Raul also provides strategic advice on tax-efficient planning in a wide range of business transactions, including real estate, and cross border acquisition and disposition of assets. His focus is on advising limited liability companies, partnerships, trusts, Subchapter S and Subchapter C corporations.

Additionally, he advises foreign clients on inbound investments in the United States and FATCA reporting. He also represents U.S. persons residing outside the U.S. who want to participate in the IRS Voluntary Disclosure / Amnesty Program to bring them into compliance with their U.S. tax reporting obligations.

Raul is currently based out of our Northern California office.


Professional Admissions and Qualifications 

  • Certified Tax Specialist by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization
  • Admitted to practice law in California and the United States Tax Court

Professional Affiliations

  • American Bar Association, Tax Committee of the Business Law Section, Chair.  Also a contributing member of the ABA’s LLCs, Partnership and Unincorporated Entities Committee.  A former ABA Business Law Fellow and frequent panelist at ABA conferences.   
  • Member of the California State Bar’s Tax and Corporate and Pass-Through Entities Committees. 
  • Board Member, Centro Legal de la Raza
  • General Counsel, Latinos in Finance

Speaking Engagements & Publications

Faculty, “Installment Sales Reporting Under Section 453: Avoiding Pitfalls: Contingent, Related Party, Depreciation Recapture, and Large Installment Sales,”  Strafford Publications, Inc. (February 18, 2021).


Representative Matters

  • Represented numerous business and individual clients before the California Franchise Tax Board (“FTB) protest and settlements units, the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA) appeals board, and the Office of Tax Appeals (OTA).
  • Successfully represented numerous clients in residency audits initiated by the FTB.
  • Fully abated discretionary penalties imposed by the IRS in transactions between foreign and domestic individuals.
  • Negotiating and obtaining settlements with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on numerous occasions, including the audit partnerships and corporations and foreign companies.
  • Establishment and operation of private and public charitable organizations.
  • Advised and structured qualified opportunity funds for various developers in the Southern California.
  • Conducted tax planning on inbound investments and acquisitions of U.S. real estate.
  • including advising on financing, structuring, and tax reporting.

American Bar Association Profile & Past Presentations