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Crane & Norcross Celebrates 50th Anniversary

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Crane & Norcross proudly turns 50, celebrating five decades of assisting clients ranging from publicly held companies to family-owned businesses in securing favorable tax assessments, negotiating large property tax settlements and refund recoveries and providing applicable incentive and exemption opportunities throughout, Chicago, Illinois and nationwide.

From representation in administrative hearings to litigating in court, our team has continued to push the envelope in the counsel and representation of national business owners, property managers and developers involved in commercial, industrial, hospitality, medical and multi-family real estate.

“I couldn’t be prouder of my colleagues for the efforts over the years to continuously meet and exceed client expectations and further allow clients to have the peace of mind that their property tax issue will be resolved to their benefit,” said James P. Boyle, firm Managing Partner. “The firm’s 50 years of service only highlights the trusting relationships we’ve developed with both clients and assessing officials, and I look forward to building onto that solid foundation for the years to come.”

C&N’s attorneys have held a variety of positions that have contributed to the firm’s well-rounded perspective and legal acumen in the property tax realm, including:

  • Partners Thomas J. Boyle and Christopher D. Shouldice have both served as an Assistant State’s Attorney in the Real Estate Tax Division of the Cook County State’s Attorney Office, where they represented offices such as Cook County’s Assessor, Board of Review and Treasurer.
  • Associate Jeffrey B. Engstrom also worked as an Assistant State’s Attorney in the Real Estate Tax Litigation Unit with the Cook County State’s Attorney Office, settling thousands of tax objection cases while successfully defending the Board of Review before the Illinois Property Tax Appeal Board, as well as in the Cook County Treasurer’s Office where he worked directly with taxpayers researching policy issues.
  • Senior Analyst D. Joseph Gitterle served the Cook County Assessor’s Office in several departments including Taxpayer Services, Residential Appeals, Taxpayer Advocate and the Technical Review department before serving the Cook County Board of Review, analyzing appeals and making final determinations of property tax assessments for a multitude of properties.

With the knowledge of and experience within local administrative agencies’ inner workings and processes in tow, the firm’s attorneys have garnered several notable achievements, including:

  • Successfully appealing the assessment of high-level properties such as the Willis Tower and the John Hancock Building
  • Leading the first victorious real estate tax-related class action in Illinois as Class Counsel, securing a $14 million judgment on behalf of more than 23,000 taxpayers in a ruling that was affirmed by the Appellate Court and the Illinois Supreme Court
  • Representation of Chicago real estate owners in a landmark case relating to the legality of certain city property tax levies, which resulted in the court entering a tax refund judgment in favor of the city property owners of approximately $50 million
  • The triumphant litigation of Valuation Objections in the Circuit Courts of Illinois, which resulted in refunds of millions of tax dollars
  • Cultivating long-term relationships with clients to offer ongoing support to minimize tax burdens and potential conflicts
  • Managing and arguing thousands of property tax appeals each year before local administrative agencies, the Circuit Court of Cook County, the State of Illinois Appellate Court and the State of Illinois Supreme Court

C&N concentrates on property tax law exclusively and focuses on maintaining trust and delivering exceptional service to clients. Organizations and individuals with interests in real estate face a wide range of complex issues, and C&N assists clients in overcoming property tax challenges and obtaining fair assessments.