Attorneys

Eckhart Kolak attorneys have the credentials you expect for business counsel and private wealth advisers. We work not only as legal advisers, but also as trusted business and personal advisers for our clients. But for us, that isn't enough. Our knowledge is never static. We're curious. We seek out information across a wide array of legal and business topics. We stay in the forefront of the law by serving as officers and directors of professional organizations. We teach the latest techniques and write articles to educate other attorneys and the public. And we all have lives outside of the law — one of us is an avid outdoorsman, one plays bass and guitar, one serves on a board at the Illinois Holocaust Museum, and another plays sax in clubs in New York and Chicago. We bring the sum of all our knowledge — along with integrity and personal commitment — to you and your engagements.

Raymond P. Kolak

Raymond P. Kolak
Eckhart Kolak LLC
55 W. Monroe Street Suite 1925
Chicago, Illinois 60603
312/236-0646 – Ext. 312
312/236-0105 – Fax
rkolak@eckhart.com

Ray counsels middle market business owners and their companies on their legal affairs. This might include starting a business, bringing in a partner, leasing or buying a factory, structuring a transaction to reduce federal income taxes, designing an executive incentive program, preparing product distribution agreements, or drafting a buy/sell agreement.

He has special expertise with purchases, sales, and mergers of businesses, and financing with debt and equity. Ray has been involved in many sales or purchases of businesses over his more than 35 years of practice, and has experience with tax planning, due diligence, agreement negotiations, and closings for those transactions.

Ray also advises real estate investors on real estate transactions, including purchases, sales, leases, financing, construction, zoning, real estate taxes, and ownership planning.

He advises business owners and private wealth clients on estate planning and estate administration, with emphasis on estate and gift tax planning and audits.

Ray was Chair of the 400-member Corporation and Business Law Committee of the Chicago Bar Association, and Chair of its Mergers and Acquisitions Subcommittee. He was President and a member of the Board of Directors of the 300-member Midwest Business Brokers and Intermediaries Association. Ray is a member of the American, Illinois State, and Chicago Bar Associations. He is also a member of the Business Law section (ABA , ISBA, CBA), Federal Taxation section (ISBA, CBA), Real Estate section (ABA, ISBA, CBA), and Estate Planning section (ABA , ISBA) of the bar associations. Ray belongs to the Union League Club of Chicago. He has also been an active member of Chicago Volunteer Legal Services. He has backpacked in forests, deserts, and mountains throughout the United States.

Articles

Speeches

  • How the Skills Gap and International Sales Opportunity Affect Manufacturing, Midwest Business Brokers and Intermediaries Association, 2014.
  • The Newly Proposed Securities Act Amendment for M&A Intermediary Licensure, Midwest Business Brokers and Intermediaries, 2014.
  • Who Controls the M&A Target During the Earnout Period?, Chicago Bar Association, 2014.
  • Emerging Trends in Middle-Market M&A Practice, Midwest Business Brokers and Intermediaries Association, 2011.
  • Mergers for Middle-Market and Lower Middle-Market Companies, Chicago Bar Association, 2010.
  • Negotiating Skills for the New Economy, Midwest Business Brokers and Intermediaries Assocation, 2010.
  • Evaluating Competing Letters of Intent, Chicago Bar Association, 2010.
  • Evaluating Competing Letters of Intent, Midwest Business and Brokers Intermediaries Assocation, 2010.
  • Why Not Post Your Client’s Terms of Sale On Its Website?, Chicago Bar Association, 2009.
  • How to Save Taxes When Selling or Buying a Business, Midwest Business and Brokers and Intermediaries Association, 2008.
  • Federal Tax Considerations - Buying and Selling a Business, Chicago Bar Association, 2008.
  • Twenty Questions to Ask When You Review a Purchase Agreement, Illinois Society of Certified Public Accountants, 2007.
  • Deal Structure, Midwest Business and Brokers and Intermediaries Association, 2007.
  • 19th Annual How to Form an Illinois Business Entity: The Corporation and Its Alternatives (Moderator), Chicago Bar Association, 2007.
  • Twenty Questions to Ask When You Review a Purchase Agreement (Webinar), Midwest Business and Brokers and Intermediaries Association, 2007.
  • Negotiating the Asset Purchase Agreement for the Sale of a Business, Chicago Bar Association, 2007.
  • Circumstances and Standards for Valuation of a Private Business, Chicago Bar Association, 2006.
  • Deal Structure, Midwest Business and Brokers and Intermediaries Association, 2006.
  • Choice of Entity - S-Corp. v. LLC: The Employment Tax Factor, Chicago Bar Association, 2005.
  • The Outer Limits of Noncompetition Agreements When Buying Illinois Businesses, Chicago Bar Association, 2005.
  • Annecca v. Lexent: Termination Rights under a Stock Purchase Agreement, Chicago Bar Association, 2004.
  • Successor Liability in Asset Sales, Chicago Bar Association, 2003.

Publications

  • How to Qualify a Manufacturer’s Rep as an Independent Contractor for Tax Purposes, 91 Taxes: The Tax Magazine 47, 2013
  • Do Web-Based Terms of Sale Work?, American Bar Association Business Law Today, 2011, reprinted in 29 American Bar Association GP Solo 60, 2012
  • Noncompetition Agreements in Illinois: How to Draft an Agreement When Buying an Illinois Business, 21 Chicago Bar Association Record 28, 2007
  • The Dangers of Successor Liability When Buying Illinois Business Assets, 93 Illinois Bar Journal 640, 2006
  • How to Use Land Trusts to Make Annual Exclusion Gifts, Chicago Bar Association Real Property Law Communicator, 1991
  • Problems With Rights of First Refusal in Leases, Chicago Bar Association Real Property Law Communicator, 1990
  • Using Tenant Estoppel Certificates Effectively, Lawyer Supplement to the Chicago Title Guarantor, 1990
  • Using Tenant Estoppel Certificates Effectively (With Forms), 6 The Practical Real Estate Lawyer 15, 1990
  • Dire Consequences of Refusing Consent to a Lease Assignment, Illinois State Bar Association Real Property Newsletter, 1989
  • The Computerized Tract Book, Chicago Bar Association Real Property Law Communicator, 1989
  • Appellate Court Narrows Scope of Real Estate Tax Exemption Applicable to Education and Religious Institutions, with Janet M. Johnson, Chicago Bar Association Real Property Law Communicator, 1988
  • Real Estate Taxation-School and Religious Use Exemptions, Chicago Bar Association Real Property Law Communicator, 1988
  • Standard Setting in Agency Adjudications Under the Federal Trade Commission Improvement Act, 46 George Washington Law Review 233, 1978

Practice Areas

  • Corporate and Business
  • Business Merger and Acquisition
  • Real Estate
  • Tax Services
  • Estate Planning and Administration

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois, 1978
  • United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, 1978
  • United States Tax Court, 2003

Education

  • George Washington University Law School (J.D., with honors, 1978)
  • Member, George Washington Law Review 1977-1978
  • University of Chicago (B.A., 1975)
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Ryan D. Strohmeier

Ryan D. Strohmeier
Eckhart Kolak LLC
55 W. Monroe Street Suite 1925
Chicago, Illinois 60603
312/236-0646 – Ext. 304
312/236-0105 – Fax
rstrohmeier@eckhart.com

Ryan joined Eckhart Kolak in 2008. Ryan’s practice covers the legal needs of the corporate client, whether it be a business start-up, complex transaction, or commercial real estate.

Ryan emphasizes high quality client service and quick response to clients’ needs as well as a superior work product. He previously practiced with the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, and with another Chicago law firm.

Ryan has an undergraduate degree in Mathematics from Rutgers University and a law degree from the University of Chicago Law School. He has been active in groups committed to bringing about election reform. His professional associations include membership in the American, Illinois State, and Chicago Bar Associations. Ryan has recorded several albums on electric and bass guitar, and avidly follows the FIFA World Cup competition.

Speeches

  • Why Not Post Your Client’s Terms of Sale On Its Website?, Chicago Bar Association, 2009.

Publications

  • Do Web-Based Terms of Sale Work?, American Bar Association Business Law Today, 2011, reprinted in 29 American Bar Association GP Solo 60, 2012

Practice Areas

  • Corporate and Business
  • Real Estate
  • Tax Services
  • Estate Planning and Administration

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois, 2006

Education

  • University of Chicago Law School (J.D., 2006)
  • Rutgers University (B.A., 2001)
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Jacob A. Chodash

 

Jacob A. Chodash
Eckhart Kolak LLC
55 W. Monroe Street Suite 1925
Chicago, Illinois 60603
312/236-0646 – Ext. 310
312/236-0105 – Fax
jchodash@eckhart.com

Jacob joined Eckhart Kolak in 2015. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois, and his law degree from UCLA.

Jacob formerly worked for a small Chicago law firm and was an extern for Judge Thomas M. Durkin of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.

At Eckhart Kolak, Jacob focuses on structuring transactions to reduce tax liabilities and maximize profit. Jacob’s legal interests include corporate and business law, real estate transactions and development, and business mergers and acquisitions. Jacob is especially interested in international business law.

Jacob is a member of the American Bar Association, the Illinois Bar Association, and the Chicago Bar Association. In his free time, Jacob participates in SCUBA diving and officiating sports.

Practice Areas

  • Business Merger and Acquisition
  • Corporate and Business
  • Real Estate

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois, 2015

Education

  • University of Illinois (B.A., 2010)
  • University of California at Los Angeles School of Law (J.D., 2014)
LinkedIn Profile

Adam W. Cohen

Adam W. Cohen
Eckhart Kolak LLC
55 W. Monroe Street Suite 1925
Chicago, Illinois 60603
312/236-0646 – Ext. 308
312/236-0105 – Fax
acohen@eckhart.com

 

Adam joined Eckhart Kolak in 2019.  He received his undergraduate degree from New York University, and his law degree from Boston University School of Law.

Adam previously worked at The Community Law Project in Chicago, where he advised small and emerging businesses on legal issues including business entity selection, corporate governance, and IP rights and protection.  Before that, he was an Assistant Editor for Oxford University Press for five years.

Adam’s responsibilities at Eckhart Kolak involve corporate matters, state and federal tax, real estate transactions, antitrust counseling, and estate planning and administration.

Adam is a member of the American Bar Association, the Illinois Bar Association, and the Chicago Bar Association.  In his free time, Adam plays the sax and piano.

Practice Areas

  • Business Merger and Acquisition
  • Corporate and Business
  • Real Estate
  • Tax

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois, 2018

Education

  • New York University Steinhardt School (B.M., 2007)
  • Boston University School of Law (J.D., 2018)
LinkedIn Profile