Retirement Plans

Overview

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Our retirement plan attorneys counsel public and private employers on a wide variety of retirement plan matters including the following areas:

  • Design and compliance for all types of qualified and non-qualified retirement plans for both for-profit and tax-exempt employers, including:
    • Defined contribution 401(k) and profit sharing plans
    • 403(b) plans
    • 457 plans
    • Employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs) and 401(k) ESOPs (KSOPs)
    • Money purchase pension plans
    • Defined benefit and individual account pension plans
    • Cash balance plans
    • IRAs
  • Documents and amendments for individually-designed and pre-approved retirement plans, including:
    • Review of other providers’ documents under Private Determination Letter Program (“PDLP”)
    • Draft and maintain individually-designed documents
    • Sponsorship of three IRS pre-approved documents for adoption by our clients:
      • Defined contribution plan – nonstandardized, with 401(k), profit sharing, matching and money purchase contribution options (approved on June 30, 2020)
      • Defined benefit pension plan, with traditional and cash balance options (approved on March 31, 2018)
      • 403(b) plan (approved on April 13, 2017)
  • Retirement plan regulatory compliance issues, including:
    • Nondiscrimination, coverage and top-heavy testing; annual addition and benefit limitations; controlled group and affiliated service group analyses
    • Bankruptcy issues
    • 401(a), 403(b) and 457(b) plan compliance issues for public sector employers (governmental plans).
  • Tax consequences to employers and employees of retirement plans, including income and excise taxes for excess contributions; unrelated business taxable income; prohibited transactions; and failure to meet minimum funding standards
  • Voluntary IRS and DOL compliance and correction programs applicable to qualified plan operational and document failures; reporting and disclosure failures; and breaches of fiduciary duty
  • Employee benefit plan administration, including:
    • supporting clients’ benefits personnel in matters involving participant communications
    • qualified domestic relations orders
    • plan investment policies and plan loan policies
    • contract negotiations with service providers
    • contributions, distributions, rollovers, terminations (including partial terminations)
    • plan self-audits.
  • Terminations of pension and other retirement plans, including Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) and IRS filings
  • ERISA reporting and disclosure, including preparation or review of annual reports, summary plan descriptions and other employee communications
  • Applications for IRS determination letters and other rulings, and DOL exemptions and advisory opinions
  • IRS, DOL and PBGC audits and examinations
  • Employee benefit plan issues in mergers and other corporate transactions
  • Multiemployer (union) plan compliance, including employer withdrawal liability issues.

The firm’s retirement plan clients include:

  • Taxable employers, both publicly traded and closely held
  • Tax-exempt employers (particularly hospitals and their affiliates)
  • Professional and trade associations
  • Retirement plan trustees
  • Retirement plan consulting firms and third party administrators
  • Governmental entities
  • Investment advisers
  • Plan participants and beneficiaries.