Employee Benefits

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Lindquist & Vennum's benefits attorneys provide public, private and tax-exempt entities a wide range of services related to the adoption, amendment, administration, and funding of qualified and nonqualified retirement plans. We also advise plan sponsors, plan committees, investment funds, record keepers, and investment advisors in fiduciary and governance matters.

We counsel large, national employers in a broad range of design and compliance issues concerning health and welfare plans—including medical, pharmacy, dental, vision, disability, life, severance, and wellness. In addition, our national ESOP practice facilitates the tax-favored transfer of employer stock to employees, and represents independent trustees, sellers, ESOP companies, and their employee owners in related legal and transactional matters.

Our attorneys frequently design, draft and counsel clients in executive, deferred compensation and stock-based plans, including traditional supplemental and excess pension and phantom equity plans, change in control and severance arrangements. We also represent companies and executives in employee benefits and stock-based arrangements in connection with acquisitions, sales and corporate restructurings.

Experience
  • Advised a financial company and its shareholders in the establishment of a new ESOP and the financing and sale of all outstanding shares to the ESOP.
  • Advised a manufacturing company and its shareholders in the establishment of an ESOP and the structured, periodic sales by shareholders to the ESOP in connection with ownership transition planning.
  • Advised an ESOP trustee in connection with the negotiation and purchase of a significant block of shares of a thinly traded public company.
  • Advised ESOP trustees of a service company in connection with the purchase by the ESOP of the remaining shares held by Company founders.
  • Advised a public company’s $1.5 billion 401(k) and nonqualified deferred compensation plans in connection with administrative services, trust and investment management agreements.
  • Advised a variety of record keepers, trust companies, and investment advisory firms, in connection with ERISA fiduciary issues involving retirement plan administration and investments.
  • Advised small and large plan sponsors with respect to 401(k) plan operational corrections, vendor searches, plan documents, investment policies and committee meetings.
  • Advised a restaurant industry vendor in developing strategies to comply with the Affordable Care Act.
  • Advised a public company in correcting Code 409A operational failures under its non-qualified deferred compensation plan to avoid or minimize penalty taxes for its executives.
  • Advised private equity firms in coordinating corporate, tax and securities issues and documents to satisfy management employees’ equity rights in the sale of portfolio companies to new buyers.
  • Advised senior managers of private-equity owned company in enforcing their equity rights in a sale of the company to another private equity firm.
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