Director, Tax Services
Sonia Walwyn is a director in the Chicago office and part of the tax services group with specific oversight and responsibility in the area of abandoned and unclaimed property. Sonia has almost 25 years of experience assisting clients, across all industry sectors, gain effective compliance in the area of unclaimed property while maximizing overall savings and efficiencies for her clients.
Throughout her career, Sonia has utilized her extensive unclaimed property knowledge and experience to assist clients in all areas of unclaimed property services. Specifically, Sonia provides audit support services by successfully assisting clients manage and defend against state-initiated audits; quantifies fair estimates and effecting favorable settlements for clients not contacted for audit through proactive reviews and quantification of liability. Sonia also assists companies develop and implement essential written policies and procedures to ensure not just timely but accurate compliance and works with clients to implement effective planning strategies to legitimately minimize unclaimed property liability prospectively.
Sonia is a frequent speaker on abandoned and unclaimed property topics for different industry groups and educational summits sponsored by various certified public accountant chapters including the Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Tax Executive Institute and the Unclaimed Property Professional Organization (UPPO), where she currently serves as chair person of the bylaws committee. Sonia has authored articles on unclaimed property for publication in industry journals such as the Journal of Accountancy and has conducted in-house and external audit training in the area of unclaimed property. Sonia has also qualified as an expert in abandoned and unclaimed property litigation.
Sonia served as sworn Deputy Treasurer/Deputy General Counsel to the Pennsylvania State Treasurer with responsiblity for, among other things, audit and legal enforcement of Pennsylvania’s unclaimed property law and successfully defended Pennsylvania's unclaimed property statute before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Sonia has also worked for two Big 4 accounting firms serving as National Director and regional practice leader respectively as well as for a regional firm providing consulting and advisory services in the area of unclaimed property.
Sonia earned an LLM in taxation from Villanova School of Law in 2000, a J.D. from Dickinson School of Law in 1988 and holds a B.S. in accounting from Elizabethtown College in Pennsylvania. Sonia is a member in good standing of the Pennsylvania Bar and is a licensed CPA in Pennsylvania and Illinois.