Michael Caryl

Of Counsel

Bowles Rice
Martinsburg, West Virginia, USA

Law Firm

Professional Summary

Michael Caryl primarily practices in the areas of tax planning and tax controversy work at all levels — federal, state and local. He served as West Virginia State Tax Commissioner from 1985 to 1988 and was president of the 12-state Southeastern Association of Tax Administrators, 1987-1988. In 2009, he was named a West Virginia Bar Foundation Fellow.

Prior to serving as Tax Commissioner, Mike practiced tax law with a Martinsburg, West Virginia, law firm for 10 years. He has served as chairman of the State Bar Committee on State and Federal Taxation, as president of the West Virginia Tax Institute, Inc. and as the official reporter for the West Virginia Law Institute’s 1992 Property Tax Appeals Reform Project.

From 1994 through 2002, he served as chairman of the Taxation of Business Committee of the West Virginia Chamber of Commerce. In 1995, he was elected a Fellow of the American College of Tax Counsel. He served as vice-chair of the Governor’s Commission on Fair Taxation (1997‑1999). He is an Income Tax Affiliate Member of the Institute for Professionals in Taxation (IPT).

He was named by The Best Lawyers in America ® as Lawyer of the Year for Trusts and Estates (2016), Mergers & Acquisitions Law (2015, 2013) and Litigation and Controversy - Tax (2014) in the northern West Virginia region. He has received an AV rating from Martindale-Hubbell, named in Chambers USA, America’s Leading Lawyers for Business and recognized by West Virginia Super Lawyers.

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  • English


Bowles Rice
Martinsburg, West Virginia, USA 25401
Of Counsel
Law Firm
Representative Reported Cases

Born, et al v. Longview Power, LLC, et al
Lead counsel in design, negotiation and implementation, and co-counsel in court defense, of a payment-in-lieu-of-tax (PILOT) agreement and the related arrangements which were integral components for the development of a $1.8 billion, 700 megawatt merchant electric power generation plant in Monongalia County. See, Born, et al v. Longview Power, LLC, et al, Cir. Ct. of Monongalia County, WV, Case No. 030-C-560 (April 12, 2005)
Gilbert Imported Hardwoods, Inc. v. Commissioner
Successfully challenging, on behalf of natural resource producers, excessive and legally dubious severance privilege tax assessments at both the administrative and judicial levels. See, e.g. Gilbert Imported Hardwoods, Inc. v. Dailey, 167 W. Va. 587, 280 S.E.2d 260 (1981)

Griffith v. ConAgra Brands, Inc.
Lead counsel in successfully advocating, in a case of first impression, a judicial challenge to the State’s use of “economic nexus” as the basis for imposing corporation income tax on multi-state enterprises. See, Griffith v. ConAgra Brands, Inc., 229 W. Va. 190, 728 S.E.2d 74 (2012)

Syncor International Corp. v. Commissioner
Lead counsel in successful judicial challenge of the State’s policy of denying sales and use tax exemption for bulk purchases of prescription drugs and appliances which ultimately led to the payment of millions of dollars of refunds to institutional health care providers throughout West Virginia. See, Sy


Yale University Law School
New Haven, Connecticut, United States
West Virginia State University
Morgantown, West Virginia, United States
Beta Gamma Sigma, Business School Honorary

Bar Admissions

West Virginia Bar Association

Court Admissions

  • Supreme Court of the United States
  • Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia
  • District of Columbia
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. Tax Court

Associations and Societies

  • President, Tri-State Estate Planning Council (2007-2008) (Chairman, West Virginia Chamber of Commerce Taxation of Business Committee (1994-2002))
  • Vice-Chair, Governor’s Commission on Fair Taxation (1997-1999) (President, West Virginia Tax Institute (1993))
  • President, Southeastern Association of Tax Administrators (1987-1988) (West Virginia State Tax Commissioner (1985-1988))
  • Chairman, State Bar Committee on State and Federal Taxation (1984) (Former adjunct lecturer at the West Virginia University College of Law)

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