Experience

Comment Letter to Federal Agency

We worked with a group of clients to submit a comment letter to the Department of Labor's Employee Benefits Security Administration in response to EBSA's Request for Information regarding electronic distribution of employee benefit plan information under ERISA. The group of clients comprised a cross-section of business types and sizes and included for-profit and tax-exempt entities. Drawing on input from individual clients and our own years of experience, we prepared a comment letter that provided EBSA with practical information and concrete recommendations for improving the electronic disclosure regulations.

Multi-Disciplinary Representation in Mill Purchase and Regulatory Compliance

We represented the buyer in the acquisition of Domtar Maine LLC, which owns and operates the pulp mill in Baileyville, Maine (also known as Woodland), and continue to represent the mill in regulatory compliance matters. The mill produces about 395,000 metric tons of pulp a year, and is Washington County's largest employer with about 300 employees. It also has significant hydroelectric generating assets, with surplus power being sold to New Brunswick Power.

Verrill acted as co-counsel with O'Melveny & Myers.

Our representation included extensive due diligence and contract negotiation, and we relied upon our extensive experience in real estate, pension and benefits, labor and employment (several unions are involved with the mill), energy (including FERC), environmental law, commercial finance, tax and intellectual property.

Retirement Plan Governance Structure

This project is a comprehensive review of virtually all aspects of our client's global retirement plans' governance, including structure, documentation, policies and processes, measured against both governing law in multiple jurisdictions and best practices in those same jurisdictions. This matter is significant due to the scope and complexity of the project as well as the international nature of the client. The client's ERISA plans melded governance of U.S. plans with those of several other countries. The plans also need to provide for system absorption of additional sizeable plans in the course of corporate acquisitions.

Retirement Plan Restructuring

Our client required an atypically complex restructuring of their retirement program to account for multiple classifications of medical and non-medical personnel at this tax-exempt employer, and the employer's desire to phase in both the freeze and plan changes, and to afford affected current plan participants an election between existing and new benefits. Our representation in this matter involved providing full analysis of legal compliance of design proposed by consulting firm, working with the employer and consultants to address legal issues and complexities and drafting new plan documents and summary plan descriptions.

Firm Highlights

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...

News

32 Verrill Attorneys, Across Three Offices, Recognized in 2021 Chambers & Partners Guide

(May 27, 2021) – Verrill has been rated as a Leading Firm in a total of 11 categories and subcategories as evaluated by London-based Chambers & Partners, one of the world's most respected legal...

Blog

COVID-19 Vaccination Incentive Programs: Additional Guidance and Some Comfort

Earlier today the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) released guidance confirming that employers may offer incentives to employees who voluntarily obtain a COVID-19 vaccination. The guidance (available here ) appears as an update...

Blog

DOL Cybersecurity Guidance

This post provides a high-level summary of the Department of Labor’s cybersecurity guidance issued in April and identifies actions retirement plan sponsors and other plan fiduciaries should consider taking now in light of the...

Blog

Pension Plan Mortality Table Litigation – What’s Next?

The first major settlement of a lawsuit challenging the mortality assumptions used to calculate pension plan benefits was announced earlier this year. According to court filings in Cruz v. Raytheon Company , the settlement...

Blog

ARPA Premium Subsidy: Long-Awaited Details Finally Arrive

The IRS recently issued Notice 2021-31 , which provides much sought-after detail regarding the contours and operation of the temporary premium subsidy for COBRA continuation coverage available through the American Rescue Plan Act of...

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

Understanding Your Fiduciary Responsibilities Under ERISA: A Webinar

Employers have long understood the importance of fiduciary compliance with respect to 401(k) plans and other retirement plans subject to ERISA, and most have sound processes and governance structures in place to ensure the...

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...

Blog

IRS Notice 2021-26 Clarifies Taxation of Dependent Care Assistance Programs

On May 10, 2021, the IRS issued Notice 2021-26 , which provides guidance regarding the taxation of dependent care assistance benefits provided through a Code Section 125 cafeteria plan, available in tax years ending...

Contact Verrill at (855) 307 0700