Our Compensation & Employment Group practices in two distinct, but related and sometimes overlapping, primary areas: Executive Compensation & Employee Benefits and Labor & Employment. Drawing on many years of experience gained at large law firms, as well as prior in-house experience with leading corporations, the C&E Group’s attorneys have addressed nearly every type of issue involving ECEB and L&E. In addition to our attorneys’ considerable experience in ECEB and L&E matters, our C&E Group is especially adept at communicating clearly with board members, executives, and general counsel alike about technical issues. Our C&E Group attorneys are frequent speakers on ECEB and L&E topics, and they have published works on a variety of ECEB and L&E matters, including securities disclosure rules relating to executive compensation, planning opportunities relating to sections 280G and 409A of the Internal Revenue Code, ERISA aspects of tax-qualified retirement plans, and employee relations matters, including privacy rights, sex and age discrimination, and trends among the courts in such matters.

Executive Compensation & Employee Benefits Practice

As ECEB attorneys, we focus on a wide variety of matters relating to executive compensation and employee benefits. We work with employers of all types and sizes across a broad range of industries. Our attorneys have extensive, in-depth knowledge of the tax law, ERISA, securities law, contract law, and corporate governance matters relating to executive compensation and employee benefits. We counsel our clients with respect to executive compensation and employee benefits aspects of mergers and acquisitions, private equity investments, and initial public offerings. We also advise clients on the design and establishment of various types of compensation programs, such as short- and long-term incentive plans, equity based incentive plans, nonqualified deferred compensation plans and phantom equity arrangements, and change in control and severance agreements and plans.

In addition, we advise employers, executives and directors, and plan fiduciaries, with respect to traditional, tax-qualified retirement arrangements. Our practice includes counseling clients on the design, implementation, and administration of tax qualified retirement plans, including 401(k) plans and ESOPs, as well as issues arising in connection with the maintenance and administration of defined benefit retirement plans and welfare benefit plans. We assist our clients by discussing with them the highly technical ERISA and tax law issues and opportunities relating to such plans. We have extensive experience with matters arising in connection with mergers, acquisitions, and other complex transactions, including the integration and wind-up of employee benefits plans, programs and arrangements. We also have significant experience representing clients before the Internal Revenue Service, the U.S. Department of Labor, and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.

We have industry leading experience with respect to the added layers of executive compensation rules and regulations confronted by financial institutions, including rules and regulations applicable to de novo financial institutions and financial institutions that find themselves subject to “troubled condition” restrictions.

Labor & Employment Practice

As L&E attorneys, we assist our clients with every aspect of complying with the myriad of ever-changing and developing labor and employment laws. We have extensive experience assisting management with the day-to-day requirements of family and medical leave, disability rights, sex, age and race discrimination matters, and sexual harassment. Because there is no one right plan or answer for every company, our attorneys work with each client’s unique goals and corporate culture. We assist them with the legal and business concerns affecting whether to adopt specific employment policy practices, how to implement those policies, and how to respond to employee disputes and legal challenges.

We have represented clients in numerous disputes arising in the employment area, including discrimination and harassment actions brought by employees and regulatory actions brought by or before governmental agencies. We have also represented clients in the defense and prosecution of non-competition and non-solicitation agreements. We have extensive experience representing our clients in various forums, including state and federal courts throughout the country, the Illinois Department of Human Rights, the EEOC, and the DOL, as well as mediations, arbitrations, and other alternative dispute mechanisms.

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