J. Fred Kingren concentrates his legal practice in the general business, corporate, and securities law, mergers and acquisitions, and taxation areas. He has extensive experience representing purchasers and sellers of many types of businesses and start-up companies in their early stages of development and during their evolution into more mature businesses. Fred also represents businesses as they seek debt and equity financing and with various types of contractual negotiations. An integral part of Fred’s practice involves providing general legal and strategic business advice, while ensuring that the business planning strategies of the businesses he represents are consistent with their owners’ estate planning strategies. Consequently, he effectively serves as general counsel for many “Main Street” businesses and their owners.
Fred has worked as in-house counsel for a public company and its insurance company subsidiaries. He has the benefit of practicing law from the client’s side of the desk, so he knows the joys and frustrations of everyday business life — including working with lawyers. Fred also worked as a CPA for what was then the “Big Eight” national accounting firm of Price Waterhouse. He continues to keep current his Certificate of Public Accountancy.
An honors graduate of the Brock School of Business at Samford University, Fred received his J.D. and LL.M. in Taxation degrees from the University of Alabama School of Law. While in law school, Fred served as Editor-in-Chief of the Alabama Law Review.
Fred has written numerous articles and spoken extensively to professional groups on topics relating to mergers and acquisitions, choice of business entity, and tax strategies.
The Birmingham Business Alliance, his entrepreneurs’ roundtable, the Brock School of Business at Samford University, and St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church are all important to Fred. He serves a Trustee of the Birmingham Business Alliance. He is a member of an entrepreneurs’ roundtable, comprised of local business owners and C-level executives, which meets monthly in Hand Arendall’s offices to discuss issues important to their businesses. He continues to be involved with his alma mater, Samford University, by serving as a member of the Advisory Board of the Brock School of Business. He is a member of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church.
- Alabama State Bar, 1987
- Alabama State Board of Public Accountancy, 1984
- LL.M. in Taxation, The University of Alabama School of Law, with honors, 1999
- J.D., The University of Alabama School of Law, 1987
- B.S. in B.A. (Accounting Concentration), with Honors, Samford University, summa cum laude, 1982
Civic and Professional Affiliations
- Business Alliance, Trustee (2006 – present)
- Samford University Brock School of Business Advisory Board, Member (2005 to present); Chairperson (2015—2018); and Vice Chairperson (2009—2012)
- The Newcomen Society of Alabama, Member (2016 to present)
- Samford University Board of Overseers (2007 – 2016; 2022 to present)
- Samford Network in Birmingham – Founder and Chairperson (2006—2016)
- St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, Member
Publications and Presentations
- “Four often overlooked questions to ask before buying or selling a business,” Birmingham Business Journal (March 28, 2014)
- “The Bottom Line,”Birmingham Business Journal (October 14, 2011)
- “What’s the top issue private companies face now?” Birmingham Business Journal (June 24, 2011)
- “Experts sound off on economic hotspots,” Birmingham Business Journal (April 25, 2011)
- “What are the most common mistakes that small businesses make and how can they be avoided?” Birmingham Business Journal (August 1, 2010)
- “What long-term impact do you believe the recession will have on estate planning?” Birmingham Business Journal (May 9, 2010)
- “Birmingham Economic Forecast: Mergers and Acquisitions,” Birmingham Business Journal (January 4, 2009)
- “Succession a hot topic as boomers loom,” Birmingham Business Journal (July 6, 2008)
- “So long, Wall Street: Increased reporting regulations have some Alabama companies abandoning the public route,” Birmingham Business Journal (March 16, 2008)
- “FSBOs: Not Necessarily the Best Approach for Businesses,” Birmingham Business Journal (November 26, 2006)
- “New year often a good time to review plans made by fiduciary,” Birmingham Business Journal (January 2, 2005)
- “Innovative Equipment Maintenance Management,”Business Alabama (June 2003)
- “Business Lawyer is integral to success of startup,” Birmingham Business Journal (August 18, 2002)
- Best Lawyers® Lawyer of the Year 2019, Corporate Law, Birmingham
- Best Lawyers In America©, Corporate Law and Mergers and Acquisitions Law (2009 to present)
- Martindale-Hubbell AV® Preeminent (2000 to present)
- Samford University, Alumnus of the Year (2016)
- Samford University Brock School of Business, Alumnus of the Year (2010)
- Beta Alpha Psi, Kappa Pi Chapter, Distinguished Alumnus (2010)