Employee Benefits and Compensation

Our attorneys have substantial expertise in advising public and private businesses and individuals in all aspects of qualified employee benefit plans for employees and non-qualified employee benefit plans for employees and directors, as well as executive compensation arrangements, often in conjunction with a securities offering or merger and acquisition transaction.

Maintaining compliance while still offering custom-tailored benefits and compensation plans

We design our employee benefit plans and executive compensation arrangements to individually address our client’s requirements within the framework provided by bank regulators, if applicable, and the Internal Revenue Code to achieve the desired compensation and tax result. We work closely with our clients in designing, drafting and implementing these plans and arrangements. Among the plans we typically design for businesses are employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs), including leveraged ESOPs, 401(k) plans, profit sharing plans, deferred compensation plans, employee stock purchase plans, incentive/performance plans, phantom stock plans, pension plans, including plans funded by bank-owned life insurance (BOLI). Tailor-made employment agreements or severance arrangements in the event of a change in control, bonus programs and unique deferred compensation agreements are a particular focus of the firm. Our compensation professionals also work closely with our securities professionals in negotiating, designing and drafting equity-based compensation plans, such as stock option plans and restricted stock plans, to ensure both federal and state securities law compliance and registration, if required.

ERISA Expertise

We routinely provide analysis of the effect of golden parachute tax regulations and the cost of existing plans in connection with our merger and acquisition practice. We also have significant experience ensuring plan compliance with ERISA, including issues relating to and structuring arrangements to avoid prohibited transactions.

IRS Experience

Our Senior Tax Attorney has served as a special advisor to the National Office of the Internal Revenue Service in connection with complex tax issues and has obtained numerous novel rulings from the Internal Revenue Service for the benefit of financial institution clients.