Principal and CEO
Master of Laws in Taxation
Email: [email protected]
Ronson J. Shamoun is the founder and CEO of RJS LAW, A Tax Law Firm. Mr. Shamoun and his experienced team of attorneys specialize in federal and state taxation matters, with an emphasis in criminal tax defense, tax controversy, international tax, and estate planning. He is passionate about providing steadfast quality legal care, and has extensive experience representing individuals and businesses before the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the Franchise Tax Board (FTB), the Employment Development Department (EDD), and the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA).
Mr. Shamoun has dedicated over twenty years of legal experience to advocating small and large tax resolution matters. Mr. Shamoun’s client-centered approach to legal matters is well-suited for any client, from small mom-and-pop business owners to large international companies with complex tax issues. He has saved clients hundreds of millions of dollars in penalties and debts, and he continues to work tirelessly to ensure each client receives a fair and just result. His sterling reputation with the United States Attorney’s Office and the District Attorney’s Office in many of California’s jurisdictions has allowed him to successfully fight for reduced criminal charges for his clients. Additionally, Mr. Shamoun has helped dozens of clients avoid criminal prosecution altogether.
RJS LAW has been recognized as the best tax law firm in San Diego by San Diego’s Best Union-Tribune Readers Poll in The San Diego Union-Tribune for 7 years and was named as one of San Diego’s Most Admired Companies from San Diego Metro Magazine in 2014.
Mr. Shamoun and the experienced attorneys at RJS LAW have managed complicated tax matters and earned unprecedented success on numerous recent Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL), and Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) cases. Notably, Mr. Shamoun and his team recently represented a client under IRS criminal investigation for their alleged misuse of PPP and EIDL funds. Despite a nearly 100 percent conviction rate by the IRS and the Department of Justice, Mr. Shamoun and his brilliant tax controversy attorneys negotiated a conclusion to the matter with the U.S. Attorney’s Office which avoided criminal indictment altogether.
Mr. Shamoun and his team have successfully assisted in preparing and claiming Employee Retention Tax Credits (ERTC) for eligible small businesses who retained employees during the pandemic. Eligible businesses could receive as much as $26,000 per employee, and Mr. Shamoun, along with his accomplished team, have assisted and worked with numerous business owners earning millions in tax credits.
Mr. Shamoun is an adjunct professor at the University of San Diego School of Law and the University of San Diego School of Business, where he teaches classes including Tax Practice and Penalties and Federal Tax Procedures and Policies. Mr. Shamoun sits on the University of San Diego School of Law Board of Visitors and the University of San Diego School of Business Board of Advisors. He is a consistent financial supporter of the University of San Diego and has established annual scholarships at the University of San Diego School of Law and the University of San Diego School of Business in his name to encourage student success and growth in our community.
In 2016, Mr. Shamoun co-founded the nationally acclaimed University of San Diego School of Law – RJS LAW Tax Controversy Institute. Since then, Mr. Shamoun and USD annually bring together the nation’s most renowned tax attorneys, CPAs, enrolled agents, and tax preparers to discuss the latest news and practices in tax. The Institute has raised thousands of dollars for student educational scholarships.
Mr. Shamoun is the recipient of numerous honors and awards. In 2017, Mr. Shamoun was honored with the prestigious University of San Diego School of Law Distinguished Alumni Award, USD Law’s highest honor. This highly esteemed designation has only been bestowed upon 83 of the University’s most acclaimed graduates since its inception in 1977.
In 2017, Mr. Shamoun was recognized for his stellar client reviews and recommendations from other attorneys in the community, and he was awarded the Client’s Choice Award in all his practice areas: tax, business, trusts, and real estate. Since 2013, Mr. Shamoun has been recognized by Martindale-Hubbell as an AV Preeminent attorney, the highest peer rating standard given to attorneys ranked at the highest level of professional excellence for their legal expertise, communication skills, and ethical standards by their peers.
Mr. Shamoun is a frequent legal commentator for many media outlets. He has been featured on Fox 5 News, ABC Channel 10 News, KUSI News, and NBC 7 News in San Diego for his legal expertise. He is also a legal and tax contributor to the San Diego Union Tribune and the San Diego Business Journal.
Mr. Shamoun is a proud San Diego native and a three-time graduate of the University of San Diego. He received his Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Accountancy in 1998, his Juris Doctor (J.D.) in 2002, and his Master of Laws in Taxation (LL.M.) in 2003. During his undergraduate education, Mr. Shamoun was a founding father of the USD chapter of Lambda Chi Alpha Fraternity.
Outside of his legal practice, Mr. Shamoun is an active member and steadfast advocate for the local San Diego community. He is the owner of the 2020 winner for the Union Tribune’s San Diego’s Best coffee shop, Café Bella, in Ocean Beach, California. Additionally, Mr. Shamoun is a real estate and business investor.
Mr. Shamoun currently resides in San Diego with his wife, Melanie, and his children Mariella, Audriana, Emilia, and Ronson Jr.
Awards and Commendations:
- San Diego Super Lawyers | 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023
- San Diego’s BEST Tax Law Firm – Union Tribune Reader’s Poll | 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2021, 2022
- San Diego’s Top Attorneys – San Diego Metro Magazine | 2020, 2022
- Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent: Highest Excellence in Legal Ability and Ethical Practice | 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020
- Top Lawyer – San Diego Magazine | 2013, 2014, 2015, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020
- San Diego Best Attorneys – San Diego Metro Magazine | 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2021
- Top 500 Influential Business Leaders – San Diego Business Journal | 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019
- Best of the Bar – San Diego Business Journal | 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017
- Most Admired CEO Finalist – San Diego Business Journal | 2015, 2016, 2017
- Top Tax Attorney – San Diego Daily Transcript | 2013, 2014, 2015
- SD500 Most Influential People in San Diego Special Edition – Professional Services – San Diego Business Journal | 2020, 2021
- State of California Senate Certificate of Recognition – RJS LAW | 2013, 2014
- California Legislature Assembly Certificate of Recognition – RJS LAW | 2013, 2014
- Top Young Attorney – San Diego Daily Transcript | 2009, 2010
- SD Metro’s Men of Accomplishment – SD Metro Magazine | 2022
- RJS LAW Recognized – San Diego’s Best Innovative Law Firms – SD Metro Magazine | 2021
- University of San Diego (USD) Mother Rosalie Clifton Hill Award | 2021
- Winner – RJS LAW – San Diego’s Best Readers Poll – Legal, Real Estate and Tax Law | 2021
- Recognized San Diego Metro Men of Influence – SD Metro Magazine | 2021
- CEO of the Year Finalist: Small Private Company – San Diego Business Journal | 2021
- San Diego 50 Leaders Making a Difference by the San Diego Business Journal | 2020
- CEO of the Year: Small Private Company – San Diego Business Journal | 2020
- USD School of Law – Distinguished Alumni Award | 2017
- Most Recommended Law Firm – Our City San Diego Magazine | 2016
- Top 10 Best Accounting Firms in San Diego, CA – AdvisoryHQ News | 2016
- Real Estate Tax Law – San Diego Magazine | 2016
- Top Tax Lawyer – San Diego Magazine | 2015
- 40 Under 40 – San Diego Metro Magazine | 2015
- Client’s Choice in Tax – Avvo.com | 2014
- Client’s Choice in Business – Avvo.com | 2014
- Client’s Choice in Trusts – Avvo.com | 2014
- Client’s Choice in Real Estate – Avvo.com | 2014
- Torch Award Finalist – Better Business Bureau of San Diego, Imperial, and Orange Counties | 2014
- Most Admired Companies – San Diego Metro Magazine | 2014
- Best Attorney – San Diego Metro Magazine | 2014
- Mover to Watch – San Diego Metro Magazine | 2014
- Family-Owned Business Finalist – San Diego Business Journal | 2014
- San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce Certificate of Merit – RJS LAW | 2014
- City of San Diego Certification of Recognition – RJS LAW | 2014
- San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce Business of the Year – RJS LAW | 2013
- Top Young Influential – San Diego Daily Transcript | 2013
- Top Lawyers in California – American Lawyer Media | 2013
- Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition – RJS LAW | 2013
- San Diego County Board of Supervisors Certificate of Recognition – RJS LAW | 2013
- Litigated case against U.S. government for failing to provide timely responses to Freedom of Information Act requests.
- Appealed IRS Excise Tax Return disallowance of $1 million in exemptions on taxpayer’s return. Successfully appealed the claim which resulted in no tax due to IRS.
- Successfully negotiated with IRS counsel to reduce gift tax penalties from several hundred thousand dollars to zero.
- Successfully settled a case for a client facing numerous counts of tax evasion and aiding and abetting after the government accused him of planning faulty tax returns for himself and others. Plead guilty to one count of personal tax evasion, resulting in $92,000 restitution and NO jail time.
- Successfully negotiated with the IRS and settled the case of a tax planner assessed $200,000 in penalties for recklessly and willfully planning tax returns for third parties. Client only paid $34,000 in penalties.
- Represented renowned and successful entrepreneur in an FTB audit with a potential disallowance of more than a million dollars in losses. Successfully limited the audit to one year with no changes made.
- Directed a trust fund recovery interview and ensured only one officer of the corporation was deemed a responsible party in a company which accrued over $350,000 in payroll taxes. The president of the corporation was determined not to be a responsible party.
- Successfully reduced a Sales Tax Audit Assessment from greater than $130,000 to less than $40,000.
- Reduced a client’s IRS liability from $250,000 to $0 by taking advantage of a little-known provision in the Internal Revenue Code and filing an amended return.
- Represented a client in a Business Property Tax Audit that resulted in a refund, rather than a tax due.
- Handled an EDD audit with a proposed assessment of greater than $100,000, which resulted in no tax due.
- Client involved in tax evasion received no jail time, just three years of probation.
- Appeals, Collections, OIC, & Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program IRS & FTB Issues – Southern California Tax Professionals 2014
- The Daily Transcript Executive Round Table – May 2014
- Careers in Tax Law Panel – California Western School of Law 2014
- Audit Techniques – CSTC CLE 2013
- Tax – USD Tax Panel 2013
- Entrepreneurship Planning Panel – USD 2012
- Tax Topics: Payroll Tax, Criminal Tax, Collection- Continuing Education Presentation for Considine & Considine, Certified Public Accountants 2012
- Careers in Tax– USD Tax Law Society 2011
- Criminal Tax Seminar – MCLE California Society of Enrolled Agents 2011
Areas of practice:
- Civil Tax Controversy and Planning
- Criminal Tax Defense
- Business and Real Estate Transactional Law
- Business Litigation
- Estate Planning
- University of San Diego Board of Visitors
- National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Emmy Awards – Board of Governors Treasurer 2014-2016 (Pacific Southwest Chapter)
- American Bar Association, Tax Section
- California Bar Association
- San Diego County Bar Association, Tax Section
- Los Angeles County Bar Association, Tax Section
- Orange County Bar Association, Tax Section
- San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce
- San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce
- Ocean Beach Mainstreet Association
- Grossmont Hospital Foundation Honorary Chair
- Knights of Columbus 2nd Degree Knight
Admitted to practice before the following courts:
- United States Tax Court
- United States District Court for the Southern District of California
- United States District Court for the Northern District of California
- United States District Court for the Eastern District of California
- United States District Court for the Central District of California
- United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
- Supreme Court of the State of California
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