Biography

Barbara Murphy chairs the Farella Exempt Organizations practice. She advises individuals and families on comprehensive tax planning – income, gift and estate – with a special emphasis on philanthropic planning. Barbara has extensive experience representing charitable organizations, including private foundations and public charities, with endowments ranging from several million to a billion dollars.

In her trusts and estates practice, Barbara counsels clients on estate planning, estate and gift taxation, income tax planning and income taxation, charitable gift planning, trust and estate administration, and compliance review of individual, trust, gift, and estate tax returns. She has successfully represented many individuals and families in audits before the IRS and the FTB, as well as numerous state taxing authorities across the country.

Her exempt organization practice focuses on all aspects of charitable organizations, including entity formation and exemptions, business planning, grant strategies and agreements, governance, regulatory compliance matters, and both mergers and dissolutions. In this role, Barbara’s work encompasses an exceptionally broad range of responsibilities, beginning at the very inception of the entity, where she counsels clients on the foundation of the organization, as well as developing internal procedures and processes, including governance, financial and operational structures, employment policies (including compensation issues), corporate restructuring, real estate transactions, negotiation of contracts, and more. In effect, she fills the same role as the general counsel of a corporation, but with the added complexity of the requirements for compliance with federal and state law applicable to nonprofits and their fundraising activities.

Barbara’s clients value her ability to evaluate their situations strategically, and to look at the facts and law from multiple sides. She excels at uncovering creative solutions to seemingly intractable challenges, as well as anticipating problems. Barbara’s true gift is her ability to  educate clients by making complex issues simple. Finally, in a field which is typically dry and highly technical, Barbara’s clients simply enjoy working with her. One high-profile Bay Area nonprofit demonstrated this by literally dubbing her the Queen of Tax Lawyers and presenting her with a crown.

Distinctions

  • The Legal 500 United States 2016 and 2017 Not-for Profit practice area.

Memberships and Affiliations

  • Member, President Emeritas,  San Francisco Estate Planning Council
  • Member, Board of Directors, Northern California Planned Giving Council
  • Vice Chair, California Pacific Medical Center Foundation Planned Giving Council
  • Member, American Cancer Society, Inc. San Francisco Advisory Board
  • Member, St. Raymond Catholic Church Pastoral Council
  • Member, Women's Impact Network Committee

Firm Highlights

Publication

Another Federal Circuit Finds Phishing Loss Covered Under Crime Policy

Companies of all sizes have fallen victim to attacks whereby fraudsters will use deceptive communications, such as spoofed emails, to trick an employee into transferring money into the fraudsters’ control. While these increasingly prevalent...

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News

Sushila Chanana Named to 2020 Leadership Council on Legal Diversity Fellows Program

SAN FRANCISCO, February 13, 2020: Farella Braun + Martel is proud to announce that Sushila Chanana has been named a member of the 2020 class of Fellows participating in a landmark program created by...

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Event

7th Annual Partner Compensation One-Day Workshop

Brian Donnelly is presenting the case study session, "Managing Partner Performance" at Fairfax Associates' 7th Annual Partner Compensation One-Day Workshop. Click here for more information.

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Event

2020 ABA National Symposium on Technology in Labor & Employment Law

Rebecca Stephens will be speaking at the 2020 ABA National Symposium on Technology in Labor & Employment Law session, "Marijuana in the Workplace." Details: According to a 2018 Pew Research Survey, 62 percent of...

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Publication

Strategy Lessons From Wells Fargo Fintech Patent Litigation

United States Automobile Association (USAA) is a financial services company that provides insurance, banking, investment, and retirement products and services for members of the military and their families. On June 7, 2018, USAA filed...

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Publication

Time to Check Your Cyber Insurance

Now that the CCPA is in effect, some companies will need to revise their policies. The cyber insurance markets are beginning to adapt to the new California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) which went into...

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Publication

Weed at Work: Understanding Legalized Marijuana in the Office

Click here  for the audio recording of the webinar "Weed at Work: Understanding Legalized Marijuana in the Office."

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News

Gov't Drops IP Theft Charges Against Ex-Jawbone Workers

Law360 reported that the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California in San Jose moved to dismiss all trade-secret-theft charges against the remaining four defendants in what was originally a six-defendant case...

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News

As In-House Counsel Ramp Up Secondment Requests, How Are Firms Responding?

In the Corporate Counsel article "As In-House Counsel Ramp Up Secondment Requests, How Are Firms Responding?", Farella Managing Partner Brian Donnelly discussed the costs and benefits of secondment programs. Link to read the full...

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Event

Risk Management Summit for Agriculture and Cannabis

Rebecca Stephens will be presenting the topic "A Closer Look at Ag/Cannabis Employment Issues Surfacing in 2020" at Newfront Insurance's Risk Management Summit for Agriculture & Cannabis. Join us for a free, all-day event...

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