Patty advises employers, fund sponsors and investors on compliance with the legal rules that regulate benefit plans and funds in which benefit plans invest. Patty advises employers on the full spectrum of employee benefit matters, with a particular focus on the design, implementation and administration of broad-based pension and retirement plans, health and other welfare benefit plans, and executive compensation programs. She has extensive experience in assisting employers with unionized and nonunionized workforces. She also represents employers and benefit plans in disputes arising under benefit plans, both in the administrative claims process and in federal court.
She devotes a substantial portion of her practice to addressing numerous situations and transactions that impact her clients’ benefit plans. She counsels employers on how to implement changes to their benefit programs, including participant communications and compliance with legal requirements. When a client is engaged in a merger or acquisition, Patty advises the client on the benefit plan impact of the transaction, including potential costs and risks and the impact of the transaction on the client’s benefit plans. Patty frequently helps employers in obtaining rulings from, and resolving controversies with, the Internal Revenue Service, the Department of Labor and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.
Patty also advises clients on the selection of an executive compensation program that meets the client’s objectives. This includes implementing equity incentive plans that provide stock grants and/or stock options for corporations and similar equity programs for limited liability companies and partnerships. She also advises clients on phantom equity plans and other compensation programs that may be better suited to a client’s needs.
Patty is also experienced in advising sponsors of hedge funds and private equity funds on their obligations to benefit plan investors and how to structure their funds (both offshore and onshore) to avoid the funds being subject to ERISA. Patty also represents benefit plan investors who invest in such alternative funds on their ERISA obligations.
Clients describe her as “extremely bright and knowledgeable.” Patty uses her exceptional breadth of experience and her active listening skills to provide creative approaches to resolve difficult legal and business problems.