Biography

Ken handles matters in all areas of employee benefits, including retirement plans, welfare plans, fringe benefits, and executive compensation. He regularly counsels clients on fiduciary obligations under ERISA, and on income and employment tax issues associated with all areas of employee benefits.

Ken has significant experience representing clients in Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) audits. Ken has represented many clients before the IRS under its Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System (EPCRS), and before the DOL under its Voluntary Fiduciary Correction Program (VFCP) and Delinquent Filer Voluntary Correction Program (DFVCP). He also spends a significant amount of time advising clients on their nonqualified deferred compensation plans, incentive compensation plans, and welfare benefit plans including the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA), and Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) issues.

Ken began his career as a law clerk to the Chief Justice of the Maine Superior Court, and then as a law clerk in the Utah Court of Appeals. He then worked in Boston for nearly four years in the tax department of a national public accounting firm, Coopers & Lybrand. He earned an advanced degree in taxation from Boston University, and for the past 20-plus years has concentrated his practice with Verrill in the area of employee benefits.

Ken currently serves as Vice Chair of Verrill's Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Group and as President of the Maine Employee Benefits Council.

Services/Industries

Education

  • Boston University School of Law  (LL.M.)
    • Taxation
  • University of Maine School of Law  (J.D.)
  • Colby College  (B.A., magna cum laude)
    • Phi Beta Kappa

Bar Admissions

  • Maine
  • Massachusetts

Memberships

  • President, Maine Employee Benefits Council
  • Maine State Bar Association
  • Employee Benefits Committee, Section of Taxation, American Bar Association
  • National Diocesan Attorneys Association

Honors

  • AV® rated by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Recognized in Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business under Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation
  • Named the Best Lawyers® 2021 Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law "Lawyer of the Year" in Portland, Maine
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© for Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law in Portland, Maine

To learn more about third-party ratings and rankings, and the selection processes used for inclusion, click here.

Clerkships

  • Maine Superior Court, Chief Justice Thomas E. Delanty II
  • Utah Court of Appeals, Judge Gregory K. Orme

Firm Highlights

Blog

ESG Ping-Pong®

The recent regulatory back-and-forth over the investment of ERISA-governed retirement plan assets based on environmental, social, and corporate governance (“ESG”) factors has demonstrated that ESG investing will remain under an intense spotlight for some...

Publication/Podcast

Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation 2020 Year-End Client Advisory

Click here to view as a PDF . This Client Advisory highlights important developments in the law governing employee benefit plans over the past year. It offers insight into what these developments mean for...

Blog

Identifying Plan Assets in ERISA Health & Welfare Plans

Last month, we advised readers of this blog to consider efforts to formalize the fiduciary governance of their health and welfare benefit plans. In that post , we described some of the reasons that...

Blog

Reporting Deferred Compensation on Form 990

Tax-exempt organizations often provide deferred compensation to their officers, key employees, and most highly compensated employees. Like current compensation payable to such employees, deferred compensation must be reported annually on Form 990, Schedule J...

Blog

Order of Benefit Deductions from Employee Pay

From time to time we field questions about the order in which deductions for various employee benefits ( e.g. , 401(k) plan elective deferrals and insurance premiums for welfare benefit plan benefits) should be...

Blog

Webinar: The Effect of COVID-19 on Employee Benefit Plans – Making Sense of the Abundance of New Legislation and Guidance

Join us on Thursday, March 18 for the next segment in the virtual series that comprises Verrill’s 2021 Employment Law Annual Update! For this segment, employee benefits attorneys Karen Hartford, Bill Jewett, and Chris...

Blog

Establish an Administrative Committee for Your ERISA Health and Welfare Benefit Plans

The fiduciary standards of ERISA apply to all employee benefit plans that are subject to Title I of ERISA. The duty of loyalty, the duty of prudence, and the duty to administer a plan...

Blog

IRS Notice 2021-15 Provides Clarity Regarding FSA Relief Available Under Consolidated Appropriations Act

Section 214 of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (CAA) provides a substantial amount of flexibility for the operation of health and dependent care Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs). The CAA did, however, leave many open...

Blog

DOL Guidance on Missing Pension Plan Participants - Part II

On January 18, we published a blog post regarding new Department of Labor (“DOL”) guidance on missing plan participants. That post is available here , and describes the DOL’s guidance on Missing Participants...

Blog

Partial Plan Terminations – An Update

In our April 2020 post , we detailed how employee layoffs can cause a qualified retirement plan to undergo a “partial termination,” resulting in required 100% vesting of the affected employees’ benefits. As 2020...

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