Melissa Dougherty

Adjunct Professor of Law


Melissa Dougherty currently serves as Senior Counsel at PNC Bank.  As in-house fiduciary counsel, Melissa counsels the bank regarding legal issues that arise from its administration of trusts and estates, including fulfillment of fiduciary duties, construction of governing instruments, rights and powers of beneficiaries and other interested parties, and coordination of fiduciary tax and litigation matters.

Prior to joining PNC Bank, Melissa co-chaired the Trusts, Estates and Wealth Preservation Group of the Pittsburgh firm, Dentons Cohen & Grigsby, P.C.  Melissa focused her private client practice in estate planning, estate and trust administration and estate, gift, and inheritance taxation of high net worth families.  Melissa provided sophisticated estate planning advice to both U.S. and non-U.S. citizen high-net-worth individuals.  Her practice emphasized wealth preservation and business succession planning, representing corporate fiduciaries and individuals in estate and trust administration matters, and gift, tax, and charitable planning.

Melissa lectures frequently for the Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s continuing legal education program and serves as a featured speaker for client and professional groups.

Key/Recent Publications

  • “Better Late Than Never: Allocating to Partially GST-Exempt Trusts after The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017,” Pittsburgh Tax Review, Vol. 16, No. 1, 2018
  • “Opportunities Created by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act for Partially GST-Exempt Trusts,” The Legal Intelligencer Wealth Management/Trusts & Estates Special Section, February 2018

Programs & Courses