Founded in 1957, the Charlotte office of K&L Gates provides global, integrated resources to local, national and international companies across a broad range of disciplines. The office and our lawyers are consistently recognized by U.S. News-Best Lawyers and Chambers USA as leaders in a number of legal service areas.
Charlotte serves as a major financial, distribution and transportation hub and is the second largest banking center in the United States. In addition, Charlotte consistently ranks as one of the fastest growing cities and best places for business in the U.S. With an eye toward providing legal services to clients across a variety of industries and in all stages of growth, our Charlotte office offers full-service capabilities backed by the global reach of our offices on five continents.
Our corporate lawyers provide comprehensive legal services and have sophisticated merger and acquisition, private equity, mezzanine finance, securities and capital markets practices. We regularly guide clients as they buy and sell businesses in a wide range of transactions, from sales of family businesses to mergers involving public companies. Our private equity and mezzanine finance practice is one of the most active in the Southeast, serving firms and funds based throughout the United States. Our lawyers have a wide range of experience in securities and capital market transactions and represent leading underwriters in Ginnie Mae, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae mortgage-backed securities issuances.
The litigators in the Charlotte office handle complex litigation, including actions in state and federal courts throughout the U.S. and in the state and federal appellate courts. In addition, our litigators regularly conduct internal investigations and represent clients in arbitration, mediation and other alternative dispute resolution matters. The office's litigation group has extensive experience in financial services litigation, complex business disputes and real estate disputes. The Charlotte litigation group has successfully represented clients in class action litigation, products liability litigation, ERISA litigation, securities litigation, lender liability litigation, construction litigation and environmental litigation.
Lawyers in our Charlotte office represent large employers in the region and across the country, helping them design, document and administer all types of qualified and non-qualified retirement plans, deferred compensation plans, incentive and equity compensation plans, and medical, disability and severance plans. We provide advice in connection with mergers and acquisitions, executive agreements, IRS, DOL, PBGC, SEC and CMS regulatory matters as well as ERISA matters. Our employee benefits lawyers also work with companies to freeze or terminate defined benefit plans and implement consumer-driven health care plans.
Our banking and asset finance lawyers represent CMBS mortgage portfolio servicers, master servicers, trustees and borrowers in a variety of financing transactions, including securitization transactions as well as defeasances, assumptions, workouts, restructurings and the origination of commercial mortgage loans. Additionally, our team represents banks, investment funds and private equity firms in loan portfolio acquisitions, workouts and dispositions. Our Charlotte banking and asset finance lawyers also represent regional, national and international bank and non-bank lenders and borrowers in a variety of debt finance matters, including senior secured and unsecured syndicated and bilateral credit facilities and asset-based loans for dividend recapitalizations, leveraged buyouts and general working capital needs. Our Charlotte restructuring lawyers are engaged in a wide range of restructuring activities involving senior and mezzanine debt, equity investments and other financing transactions.
Our Charlotte real estate lawyers represent national, regional and local clients in all areas of real estate, including development, finance, leasing, joint ventures, public/private developments, environmental and land use, as well as acquisitions, equity investments and mixed-use/planned development matters. Our real estate lawyers take advantage of the capabilities of our environmental practice group with regard to environmental laws and regulations affecting real estate transactions. We can provide advice regarding a range of environmental issues, from compliance with government regulations to insurance coverage litigation to issues relating to toxic mold and air quality. We also regularly advise clients regarding the environmental risks of developing and leasing particular sites.
Our tax lawyers in Charlotte support our other practices and serve clients with specific tax issues, including tax controversies. Our estate lawyers assist our clients in planning for and implementing wealth transfers as well as in connection with estate administration. They also provide counsel on tax-exempt organizations and charitable giving.