Since the 1974 enactment of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), employers have confronted increasingly complex federal regulation of their employee benefit plans. Our lawyers have broad experience in handling all types of issues that arise in this area, including those relating to pension, profit-sharing, and stock bonus plans; health and welfare plans; and executive compensation arrangements.
Our lawyers help clients design, implement, and administer all types of tax-qualified retirement plans and provide counsel concerning Internal Revenue Service, Department of Labor, and Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation regulatory compliance issues. Working closely with our business lawyers, we also assist clients with the special benefits issues that arise in the context of corporate mergers and acquisitions.
Our Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation attorneys help employers comply with special industry-related requirements regarding their benefit plans. One area we particularly emphasize is the various "aggregation" rules that can complicate pension arrangements. We help clients establish and maintain employee stock ownership plans, and we have significant experience in stock-based compensation plans for both public and private companies.
We also help clients with the negotiation, drafting, and implementation of employment agreements as well as advising clients on the unique tax rules applicable to executive compensation arrangements. Since 2004, we have had extensive experience in advising clients regarding what they must do to keep such arrangements in compliance with Code Section 409A.
Our attorneys handle disputed claims and appeals of denied claims in employee benefits plans on behalf of both plan administrators and insurance carriers. We provide substantive support on ERISA litigation matters. In addition, we have experience representing ERISA fiduciaries in various enforcement actions, including in both federal and state court litigation and Department of Labor investigations.