American Bar Association
Employee Benefit Plans and Other Compensation Arrangements Group

Employee Benefit Plans and Other Compensation Arrangements Group

Who We Are

Welcome to our web page. We are a group of lawyers who help businesses, their workers and other individuals understand and solve issues that arise in the operation of employee benefit plans and compensation arrangements. Our clients' plans are central to the economic wealth and well-being of their employees. The plans also are an important part of our clients' efforts to recruit, retain and motivate employees. The plans are often involved in real estate and other common business transactions and create legal risks for businesses and others involved in them.

Our Group provides great value to members by helping them to stay current on the many and changing legal rules that apply to their clients' plans, especially ones relating to qualified plans, medical and other welfare plans and nonqualified deferred compensation plans. Some of our Group members also focus on fiduciary responsibilities related to the operation of plans. Others focus on the formation and termination, and litigation involving this area of practice. The Group is a past Diversity Award Recipient from RPTE and has a strong committment to diversity.

The Committees in this Group are as follows:

Programs, Meetings and Events

Committee Events

Schedule of Group Conference Calls In 2018

January 1, 2018 - July 31, 2018
Our Group holds bi-monthly conference calls open to all interested members of the RPTE section, as well as special "Study Group" calls to discuss current/breaking issues of interest. The calls generally are held at 1:00 pm ET on a Friday during selected months. Please join us!

Here is the list of the remaining calls for 2018:

June 29, 2018—Health and Welfare Plans


The Group hosted similar calls during 2016-2017 bar year.

Group Conference Call on June 29, 2018

June 29, 2018
Please join us on June 29, 2018 at 1 PM (Eastern), Noon (Central), 11 AM (Mountain), and 10 AM (Pacific) for our next Group Conference Call. The Health & Welfare Committee leadership will lead our discussion of recent developments affecting health and welfare plans. We expect an informal discussion of various hot topics.

Dial in number:   866-646-6488
Participant Code: 725-588-7619

Group Conference Call on November 10, 2017

November 10, 2017
The RPTE Employee Benefit Plans and Other Compensation Arrangements Group held a free conference call led by the Qualified Plans Committee on November 10, 2017, at 1 PM (Eastern), Noon (Central), 11 AM (Mountain), and 10 AM (Pacific) to discuss What is on Counsel’s Desk with respect to Qualified Plans.

Lany Villalobos provided a top ten qualified plan topics list for 2017.

April Goff discussed what is on retail counsel’s desk, including:
· Review and analysis of annuitization and cash-out of small balances (pension)
· Best practices regarding lost participant searches (pension and 401(k))
· Finding participants for 70 ½ distributions
· Puerto Rico tax limitations
· Fiduciary duties with respect to RFP/bidding

The Group also discussed:
·       Lost participants best practices for both DC and DB plans (DB – deferred vested attaining NRA and/or MRD);
·       Uncashed checks;
·       VCP filings under EPCRS; and
·       Disaster Relief Efforts including provisions from Disaster Tax Relief and Airport and Airway Extension Act of 2017.

Group Conference Call on September 29, 2017

September 29, 2017
The Termination and Transactions subcommittee presented its annual PBGC update, including the proposed expansion of the Missing Participants Program and other regulatory action. The discussion was led by Harold Ashner, Damarr Butler, and Shannon Smith.

Non-Qualified Deferred Compensation

May 18, 2018
Please join us on April 6, 2018 at 1 PM (Eastern), Noon (Central), 11 AM (Mountain), and 10 AM (Pacific) for our next Group Conference Call. The Nonqualified Deferred Compensation Committee leadership lead our discussion of recent developments and particularly ones arising from the 2017 Tax Act. We expect an informal discussion of various hot topics.
Section Events

    Planning for Individuals with Chronic Illnesses


    Many clients are affected by chronic illnesses and a large number of those are under 64. This program will hopefully help you identify clients affected by chronic illness, understand more planning opportunities, and advise them and their families accordingly. This program will cover: - Income tax ...

    The Role of In-House Counsel in Promoting Law Firm Diversity


    Gain valuable insight from a panel that comprises senior in house counsel for an automotive manufacturer; general counsel for a residential and commercial real estate company; a shareholder in a major national law firm who helps guide the firms diversity and inclusion initiative; and a senior in-house ...

    The Fundamentals of the Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax


    This program will discuss the basics of the generation-skipping transfer tax. The program will be beneficial for not only new estate planning attorneys, but also experienced estate planners wanting to refresh on the forgotten transfer

LISTSERV Communication

In order to send a message to the listserve, send the message as an email to the address below. You must be a member of the Committee to use the listserve.

In order to access the listserve archive, please click here. Please note that you will need to create a new password, separate from your regular ABA password, in order to use this archive.




Paliga, John
Suhre, Karen

Council Representative:

Talavera, Henry


Leight, Elizabeth

Committee Roster  

Modified by John Paliga on June 10, 2018

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