University of Texas at Austin School of Law, J.D.
  • cum laude
Williams College, B.A.
  • Political Economy
Georgetown University

Bar Admissions


  • Conversational French

Professional Affiliations

American Bar Association

  • Tax Section
    • Committee on Financial Transactions

State Bar of Michigan

  • Tax Section
    • Council Member
      • 2015 Annual Tax Conference, Chair
    • Business Entities Committee, former Chair
News & Resources


James Combs concentrates his practice on corporate taxation, mergers and acquisitions, tax credit projects, and financial products taxation. James also represents clients in connection with tax legislation matters, including drafting legislation and lobbying activities. In addition, he has extensive experience obtaining private letter rulings from the Internal Revenue Service and representing taxpayers in federal income tax audits.


  • Represents Compuware Corporation in connection with its spin-off of its publicly traded subsidiary, Covisint Corporation
  • Represents Biotechnology Industry Organization, a trade association headquartered in Washington, D.C., in connection with tax legislative matters
  • Represented Capitol Bancorp Ltd., a bank holding company with a network of banks and bank operations in ten states and total consolidated assets of approximately $2.0 billion, in its Chapter 11, pre-packaged plan of reorganization
  • Assisted drafting legislation for federal income tax credit for energy projects


Children's Hospital of Michigan

  • Board of Directors, 2015-present

Grosse Pointe Yacht Club

  • Junior Sailing Program, Co-chair, 2013-2015

News & Resources



Seminars & Events


  • The Best Lawyers in America, 2018-2019
    • Recognized in practice area of Tax Law
  • DBusiness, Top Lawyers, 2018

Academic Appointments

  • Walsh College, Instructor, provided course instruction on bankruptcy and insolvency tax topics
  • University of Michigan Law School, Guest Lecturer on certain tax aspects of joint ventures
  • Wayne State University Law School, Guest Lecturer on taxation of business entities and joint ventures
  • Cooley Law School, Guest Lecturer on corporate income tax issues