Zal Kumar is a partner in Mayer Brown's New York office and a member of the State & Local Tax (SALT) practice. He provides both transactional tax planning advice and tax controversy assistance. His clients include asset managers, commercial and investment banks, broker-dealers, utility companies, e-commerce companies, manufacturers, and high-net-worth individuals, including executives and investment professionals.

In this capacity, Zal has counseled on complex tax audits and appeals, false claims act investigations, M&A transactions, business reorganizations, business relocations, investment fund formation and operation, real estate transactions, securities transactions, lending and leasing transactions, entering and expanding in US markets, and state tax planning strategies.

He assists the world’s largest banks and asset managers with New York State and City tax matters. He is particularly skilled at navigating the multiple tax types that apply to their operations, and dealing with the agencies that handle tax audits and investigations—capabilities he strengthened while working in government. As the director of business tax services for the New York City Department of Finance (DOF), Zal was the principal drafter of New York City’s Business Corporation Tax, spearheaded a range of New York City audit policies, developed legal guidance for business taxes, handled DOF’s engagement in claims brought under the New York State False Claims Act, and worked with New York State on the development of its Franchise Tax regulations.

Zal’s state and local tax knowledge covers the full spectrum of state and local tax issues, including nexus, income classification, allocation and apportionment, net operating losses, combined reporting, sales and use tax, real property transfer tax, employer withholding, and individual residency. Prior to joining Mayer Brown and working in government, Zal advised on the federal, state and local tax aspects of private equity and real estate transactions. He has built on that foundation to develop his current practice.

Zal is an active thought leader in the tax community. He is co-chair of the Local Tax Subcommittee of the American Bar Association Tax Section, participates in numerous speaking engagements and frequently authors articles related to New York tax.


Vanderbilt University, BA, cum laude
Dean's List

George Washington University Law School, JD

New York University School of Law, LLM


  • New York
  • California