Larry Kern is an attorney in Holland & Knight's Chicago office and a member of the firm’s Private Wealth Services Group. Mr. Kern focuses his practice on tax and estate planning matters for ultra-high-net-worth individuals and families, closely held business owners, private equity and hedge fund principals, and charitable organizations.

Mr. Kern has a wealth of experience advising clients in connection with the formation and operation of family offices and private trust companies. In addition, Mr. Kern has an in-depth knowledge of the migration of trusts to reduce or eliminate state income tax exposure. As a certified public accountant, he also has substantial experience with estate and trust administration matters, preparing and reviewing state and federal income, estate, gift and generation-skipping transfer tax returns, and helping clients manage disputes with the IRS and state taxing authorities.

Mr. Kern regularly designs, implements and administers sophisticated wealth transfer tools, including grantor retained annuity trusts, sales to defective grantor trusts, asset protection trusts, family investment vehicles, dynasty trusts and life insurance trusts. He also assists closely held business owners and wealthy individuals with business succession planning, as well as income tax and transfer tax reduction planning.

Additionally, Mr. Kern regularly represents clients in estate and trust administration matters, including contested estates and trusts, and he counsels clients on the formation and administration of a variety of tax-exempt and charitable entities.

Prior to joining Holland & Knight, Mr. Kern worked in the Chicago office of a multinational law and lobbying firm.

Representative Experience

  • Managed the formation and administration of several family offices and private trust companies, the creation of family-pooled investment structures, decanting trusts to achieve personal and tax objectives, assisting closely held business owners in the transfer of minority interests to other family members
  • Represented a multi-generational family in connection with the creation of a structure designed to govern multiple trusts being migrated from one state to another to achieve tax and administration objectives
  • Represented parents in the formation of a limited liability company to hold artwork and other investment assets in connection with the negotiation and implementation of a family settlement agreement to prevent costly litigation among family members
  • Represented individuals and fiduciaries in the settlement of various federal and state tax liens


  • University of Illinois College of Law, J.D.
  • University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, B.S., Accounting
Bar Admissions/Licenses
  • Illinois
  • Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
  • Chicago Estate Planning Council, 1995-Present
  • Chicago Community Trust, Professional Advisory Committee
Honors & Awards
  • Illinois Top Lawyers, Leading Lawyers Network, 2023-2024

Speaking Engagements