John Balian’s areas of practice includes tax planning for sales of businesses and real estate, income and estate/gift tax audit representation, IRS Appeals, Tax Court representation, tax planning for judgments and settlements, estate and wealth transfer planning, and inheritance dispute consultation and mediation.

John brings over 33 years of tax experience to his practice. He began is tax career in 1986 with the IRS as a Revenue Agent in the Los Angeles District conducting forensic examinations of individuals, corporations, partnerships, trusts focusing on understated income or overstated deductions.

Upon graduation from law school, he began his legal career in the tax controversy field with the Wilshire Group, representing taxpayers with tax disputes before the IRS examination and collection divisions. 

In 1995, John became a founding partner in the Sherman Oaks-based tax, probate and estate planning firm of Burgh, Balian et al.  In 2010, he established his own firm, the Balian Law Group, in Encino, focusing upon trust and probate litigation, inheritance dispute mediation, tax planning and tax dispute resolution.

In 2008, while maintaining his law practice, John joined the graduate tax faculty at California State University Northridge (CSUN) as an adjunct professor of taxation, where he has taught 24 consecutive semesters of Introduction to Tax Procedure.  Additionally, since 2008, he serves at the faculty-technical adviser to CSUN’s Bookstein Low Income Tax Clinic, where he oversees students’ case work on pro bono tax audit and tax collection matters. 

John currently serves as an Advisory Board Member to the CSUN graduate tax, accounting and information systems programs. Previously he served as the chair of the West Valley CPA group of the California Society of CPAs’ Los Angeles Chapter, and has been a panelist at State Bar estate planning conferences, as well as the IRS Taxpayer Advocate’s national conference.  He frequently provides continuing education to other attorneys and CPAs

Since 2005, John has been designated a Certified Specialist in Taxation Law by the Board of Legal Specialization of the State Bar of California. 


John holds a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting and a Master’s degree in Taxation from CSUN. He earned his law degree from Southwestern Law School.