The Wagner Law Group | Est. 1996

Sophisticated Legal Solutions Boutique-Style Service

Photo of John J. Sohn

John J. Sohn



New York

Practice Areas


John Sohn has over 25 years of experience advising financial institutions with respect to investment management matters including retirement-related products and services. His expertise includes ERISA and the areas of securities and banking laws relating to fiduciaries. John has extensive experience advising asset management firms, broker-dealers, banks, insurance companies and retirement platforms. He also has extensive experience with fund products and their distribution, including registered funds, private funds and bank-maintained CITs, as well as managed accounts and retail SMA/UMA programs. He has specialized expertise in short-term investment funds including 2a-7 money market funds and bank STIFs. Mr. Sohn graduated with honors from both Harvard Law School and Harvard College. Before joining The Wagner Law Group, John served as Associate General Counsel for Legg Mason and Citigroup, respectively, as their lead ERISA counsel, and most recently served as Senior Managing Counsel at BNY Mellon.


  • Harvard Law School (cum laude), Cambridge, MA. Juris Doctor degree, 1994
  • Harvard College (graduated with honors), Cambridge, MA. Bachelor of Arts degree, Economics, 1991

Bar Admissions

  • New York
  • Massachusetts – Inactive

Publications & Media

  • “Benchmarking Services: A Potential Solution to Every 401(k) Plan Fiduciary’s Problem” – BNA Tax Management Memorandum, Vol. 51, No. 16, August 2, 2010
  • “DOL Proposes New Regulations for Investment Advice” – 401(k) Advisor, April 2010
  • A Plan Sponsor’s Fiduciary Duties Under ERISA: With Great Responsibility Comes Great Potential Liability” – Co-author, 401(k) Advisor, March 2010
  • Best Practices Evolving from 401(k) Fee Litigation” – 401(k) Advisor, February 2010
  • “ERISA Viewpoint: Make the Most of Auto-Enrollment Rules – Taking Advantage of the QDIA, ACA, EACA and QACA Standards” – Legg Mason’s The Retirement Edge, Fall 2008
  • “ERISA Viewpoint: Participant Education Can Reduce the Employer’s Risk” – Legg Mason’s The Retirement Edge, Summer 2008


  • “Preparing Your Organization for 2013: Are you Ready for the DOL Audit?” – Webinar, for AXIS Retirement Analytics Platform, October 17, 2012 – View PowerPoint presentation here
  • “Best Practices: Compliance with Retirement Issues” – Speaker and Co-panelist, 2011 New England Regional Meeting for National Society of Compliance Professionals, Inc., May 14, 2011
  • “What’s Up in Washington, Effects on You and Your Clients” – Speaker, John Hancock Retirement Plan Services Conference, Scaling New Heights, May 6, 2010
  • “Credit Risks Associated With Underfunded Pension Plans” – Speaker and co-panelist, Salomon Smith Barney Plan Investments Conference, March 13, 2003