Niles A. Elber, a Member in Caplin & Drysdale's Washington, D.C., office, has more than 20 years of experience representing clients in civil and criminal tax controversies. His practice is broad, ranging on the civil side from IRS examinations, Appeals matters, collections and proceedings in federal court while on the criminal side handling both administrative and grand jury tax investigations.  With considerable experience in offshore compliance matters for U.S. taxpayers, Mr. Elber has assisted hundreds of clients with their voluntary disclosures and income tax and FBAR penalty exams related to unreported foreign bank accounts.


Mr. Elber is particularly focused these days on defending clients who find themselves caught up in aggressive IRS campaigns against alleged abusive tax shelters and transactions. Most recently, he represented a defendant in one of the largest and most significant tax cases brought by the U.S. Department of Justice in the “conservation easement” area.

Mr. Elber lectures regularly on matters involving tax controversies and co-authored the BNA Portfolio Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR). He is a Fellow of the American College of Tax Counsel (ACTC), an honor reserved for those at the top of their profession. Mr. Elber is a past chair of the ABA Tax Section Civil and Criminal Tax Penalties Committee, serving from 2017 until 2019.  Prior to that, he served as a vice-chair on the same committee for five years. Mr. Elber is also a former ABA Nolan Fellow, which honors a select group of outstanding young tax lawyers from across the nation who have shown significant contribution, service, and leadership.

Admissions & Education

Bar & Court Admissions
  • District of Columbia
  • North Carolina
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of North Carolina
  • U.S. Tax Court
  • District of Columbia Court of Appeals
  • U.S. District Court, District of Columbia

LL.M., New York University School of Law, 1999

J.D., Tulane University Law School, 1998, cum laude

B.S., University of North Carolina at Charlotte, 1993

Recognitions & Noteworthy

Honors & Recognitions
  • The Legal 500, Next Generation Lawyers, 2017-2022; Recommended, 2017-Present; Leading Lawyer, 2023
  • Super Lawyers, Washington, D.C., 2020-Present
  • Martindale-Hubbell® AV® Preeminent™

Professional Activities & Affiliations

Other Professional Affiliations

Fellow, American College of Tax Counsel (ACTC)

Member, American Bar Association, Section of Taxation

Chair, American Bar Association, Section of Taxation, Civil and Criminal Tax Penalties, 2017

Fellow, American Bar Foundation

Newsroom & Publications

Speaking Engagements
Publications & Alerts
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