Foster Swift's employee benefits practice offers a full range of tax, labor law and litigation services relating to employee benefit plans. We advise clients who are subject to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), as well as state and local governments and qualifying church organizations that are exempt from ERISA.
Our attorneys assist with the design and drafting of benefit plans and related employee disclosure materials. We also help employers ensure that their programs comply with changes in relevant law. We negotiate closing agreements and private letter rulings with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and work with employers regarding IRS and U.S. Department of Labor Audits. Our practice also includes advising clients regarding important corporate transactions that involve Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs), and prohibited transaction and other special legal problems.
Our team provides advice to employers regarding the corporate governance and fiduciary duty aspects of implementing and administering an employee benefit plan. We also advise clients regarding the growing area of international employee benefit planning. This work includes the taxation of employee benefit plans pursuant to tax treaties.
Our work covers all kinds of qualified retirement plans, including (1) 401(k), ESOP, 403(b) and other defined contribution plans, and (2) defined benefit plans (including cash balance plans). Foster Swift also has an extensive practice relating to nonqualified top hat plans, excess benefit plans, Internal Revenue Code Section 409A compliance, funded nonqualified deferred compensation and rabbi trust issues, and the securities law (SEC and blue sky) implications of nonqualified deferred compensation arrangements.
We have extensive experience with health plan compliance and documentation (including Affordable Care Act issues); funded welfare benefits; the creation of Voluntary Employees Beneficiary Association (VEBA) programs; cafeteria flex plan design and implementation; welfare benefit plan discrimination testing; COBRA compliance; Health Reimbursement Arrangement (HRA); Health Savings Account (HSA); dependent care assistance; transportation fringe; and other welfare benefit programs. We have also advised clients regarding the establishment of Revenue Credit Account (RCA) arrangements (ERISA expense accounts) and the related U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) guidance.
Foster Swift clients have been as varied as the challenges they’ve faced over the years. When it comes time to meet your own unique challenges, be comforted knowing that members of our Employee Benefits Practice Group are on your side, drawing upon our breadth of experience and skill to assist you.
Foster Swift has been named a Tier 1 firm in Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law in Lansing by U.S. News – Best Lawyers® "Best Law Firms" in 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021.
Recent Blog Posts
- New Safe Harbor Announced for Electronic Disclosures Required by ERISA
- Enforceability and Incorporation of Online Terms and Conditions
- Benefit Plans Established by Church Affiliates Are Exempt From ERISA
- Employee or Independent Contractor? Uber Wages Battles to Answer Critical Question for On-Demand Economy Companies and Their Workers
- Remedying Past Employee/Independent Contract Misclassification Through IRS’s Voluntary Settlement Program
- Are Death Benefits Owed When an Employee Dies after Contracting the Coronavirus?
- Federal Assistance to Providers and Required Coverage of COVID-19 Testing by Insurers
- Federal District Court Vacates New Association Health Plan Rules
- U.S. Department of Labor Issues New Rules Concerning Association Health Plans
- Affordable Care Act Reporting Deadlines Extended
Publications & Alerts
- IRS Announces 2021 Cost-of-Living Adjustments for Retirement Plans and for Health and Welfare Benefit Plans, Foster Swift Business & Tax Law E-blast, October 27, 2020
- Governor Whitmer Signs Extension of Unemployment Benefits into Law and Other COVID-19-Related Legislation, Foster Swift Labor & Employment Law News E-blast, October 23, 2020
- MERS Defined Benefit Plan Changes, Foster Swift Municipal Law News E-blast, September 21, 2020
- Common Compliance Errors: Cafeteria Plans, Foster Swift Business & Tax Law E-blast, September 14, 2020
- The Benefits of Adopting a Pre-Approved Plan, Foster Swift Business & Tax Law News E-blast, August 11, 2020
- Fiduciary Basics for Benefits Plans, Business & Tax Law News E-blast, July 27, 2020
- Hiring, Investigating and Discipline/Discharge in the Law, Foster Swift: Developing Labor Law Update, May 9, 2018
- Hiring, Investigating and Discipline/Discharge in the Law, Foster Swift: Developing Labor Law Update, February 7, 2018
- Employee Benefits Basics from 401(k) to PPACA", Michigan Nursery & Landscape Association Great Lakes Trade Expo, January 26, 2015
- An Introduction to ESOPs, WEBINAR: The National Center for Employee Ownership, December 2, 2014
- A Look Into A DOL Audit, Michigan Chapter of the ESOP Association, September 25, 2014
- Second-Stage ESOP Transactions, National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO), March 25, 2014
- ESOP: The Cliffs Notes' Version, Michigan Chapter of the ESOP Association, March 13, 2013
- Foster Swift Elects Six Shareholders in 2021, January 13, 2021
- Resource Published to Help Organizations Link to Trending Legal Issues, Foster Swift Business & Tax Law News, November 17, 2020
- Foster Swift Listed in "Best Law Firms" 2021, Best Lawyers, November 5, 2020
- Legal Requirements For Employer Benefit Plans, Michigan Business Network, September 29, 2020
- Johnson Presents on ESOPS as a Succession Strategy, September 22, 2020
- Workers’ Comp Defense Blog Provides Michigan Case and Legislative Updates, April 13, 2020
- Foster Swift Welcomes Three Associates, November 14, 2019