Durham Law Office

Diamond View II, 280 South Mangum Street, Suite 130, Durham, NC 27701

(919) 787-8880 Contact

Raleigh Law Office

3605 Glenwood Avenue, Suite 500, Raleigh, NC 27612

(919) 787-8880 Contact


A member of Manning Fulton’s corporate practice, John works with clients in the areas of ERISA and employee benefits, corporations (including professional corporations), estate planning and administration, and tax. His ERISA experience includes advising clients on the selection and administration of qualified and non-qualified retirement plans and other employee benefit plans. He is experienced in working with profit sharing plans, 401(k) plans, 403(b) plans, employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs), individual retirement accounts (IRAs), simplified employee pensions (SEPs), defined benefit pension plans, and non-qualified deferred compensation plans.

John advises many companies and professional corporations on corporate, tax, and regulatory compliance matters. He represents individuals in estate planning matters, from preparing wills and trusts for clients with modest assets to implementing complex estate plans addressing estate tax and other issues. John is also experienced in estate and trust administration matters and has litigated estate tax matters before the United States Tax Court and the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

He also provides technical support to litigation attorneys in the firm in the areas of ERISA and employee benefits and tax.

John has been recognized by Business North Carolina magazine’s Legal Elite (2006, 2007, 2009, 2010 and 2012-2013) in the area of Tax and Estate Planning and in Best Lawyers in America in the area of Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law (2017).




  • George Washington University (J.D., with honors, 1972)
  • Wittenberg University (B.A., 1968)

Admitted to Practice

  • State of North Carolina, 1986
  • United States Tax Court, 1980
  • State of Ohio, 1972 (Inactive)

Professional Memberships & Activities

  • North Carolina Bar Association, (1986 – present)
    • Tax Law Section (1986 – present)
      • Member of Council (1993 – 2006)
      • Chair (2006)
    • Health Care Law Section
  • American Bar Association (1972 – present)
  • Wake County Bar Association (1986 – present)
  • Triangle Benefits Forum (1990 – 2006)
    • Charter Member (1990)
    • Past President
  • Member, ESOP Association
  • Member, National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO)
  • Recognized by Best Lawyers in America (2018-2022) for Corporate, Employee Benefits (ERISA), Tax, and Trusts and Estates Law

Reported Cases

  • Estate of Waters v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue, United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, 48 F.3d 838 (1995)
  • Hagwood v. Newton, United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, 282 F .3d 285 (2002)


  • “ERISA Fiduciary Duties and Liabilities,” North Carolina Bar Foundation and the Labor and Employment Law Section of the North Carolina Bar Association, February 1996
  • “Equitable Distribution – Retirement Plans,” Wake Forest University, September 1997
  • “Division of Retirement Plans, IRAs and Deferred Compensation Plans,” North Carolina Bar Foundation and the Family Law Section of the North Carolina Bar Association, September 1998

Community Activities

  • The 200 Club of Wake County
    • Charter Member (2000)
    • Board of Trustees (2000 – present)
    • Secretary / Treasurer (2000 – 2015)
  • Recognized by the North Carolina Bar Association and Business Leader Media for significant pro bono work in 2008
  • Youth sports coach for YMCA and Raleigh Parks and Recreation Department (1995 – 2002)

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