David C. Olstein is a counsel at the firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP and a member of the firm’s Executive Compensation and Benefits Group. His practice focuses on the fiduciary responsibility provisions of ERISA. He has extensive experience advising asset managers on ERISA matters, including compliance with ERISA’s prohibited transaction rules, in connection with the investment of pension plan assets. Mr. Olstein also regularly advises fund sponsors on ERISA matters, including the application of ERISA’s “plan asset” rules, in connection with the establishment and operation of private investment funds. He also has represented issuers and underwriters in connection with the marketing of securities to investors subject to ERISA, and has advised plan sponsors and creditors on pension liability issues arising under Title IV of ERISA.
Mr. Olstein is a member of the New York City Bar Association Committee on Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation and currently chairs the Subcommittee on Private Equity & ERISA Fiduciary Duties.
J.D., University of Virginia School of Law
B.A., Johns Hopkins University
Area of Practice
Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation
Linda J. Haynes is a partner practicing in the Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Department. She has substantial experience counseling mid-sized to Fortune 500 clients in all elements of employee benefit plans and executive compensation. Ms. Haynes regularly counsels public and private clients in connection with the design, development and on-going compliance of their employee benefit programs, including qualified and non-qualified retirement plans, health plans, cafeteria plans, and other types of welfare plans.
Ms. Haynes has significant experience in advising clients concerning their defined benefit pension plans, including cash balance and pension equity plans. In addition, Ms. Haynes has extensive experience in developing and implementing executive compensation programs (including equity-based and deferred-compensation programs) for public and private companies. Ms. Haynes’ practice also includes advising clients on employee benefits and executive compensation issues raised in mergers, acquisitions and dispositions.
She has substantial experience in advising employee benefit plan fiduciaries regarding their duties and responsibilities. For numerous clients, Ms. Haynes routinely participates in their fiduciary committee meetings. She frequently conducts training for fiduciary committees, including training regarding general fiduciary duties under ERISA, prohibited transactions and current developments. Ms. Haynes regularly advises clients regarding fiduciary issues and obligations raised by proposed plan investments. In addition, she counsels clients regarding employee benefit plan investment policies, negotiates investment management agreements, and reviews alternative investment vehicles. Ms. Haynes works closely with the firm’s Employee Benefits Litigation group in cases involving complex ERISA issues, including fiduciary issues and hybrid defined benefit plan issues.
J.D., Loyola University of Chicago School of Law, cum laude (1994)
B.S., Purdue University (1987)
American Bar Association
Board member of Connections for Abused Women and their Children (2006 to present)
Co-Author, "The DOL Fiduciary Definition Regulations are Here . . . Really They are Finally Here," Seyfarth Shaw LLP - Management Alert (April 18, 2016)
Co-Author, “PBGC Issues New Proposed Rule on Reportable Events,” Seyfarth Shaw LLP - One Minute Memo (April 11, 2013)
Co-Author, “Supreme Court To Hear Same-Sex Marriage Cases,” Seyfarth Shaw LLP - Management Alert (December 11, 2012)
Co-Author, “IRS Final Regulations Allow Pension Plan Sponsors in Bankruptcy to Eliminate Prohibited Payment Options,” Seyfarth Shaw LLP - One Minute Memo (November 13, 2012)
"The DOL Fiduciary Definition Regulations are Here . . . Really They are Finally Here," Roundtable, presented by Seyfarth Shaw LLP, New York, NY (May 3, 2016)
"The DOL Fiduciary Definition Regulations are Here . . . Really They are Finally Here," Webinar, presented by Seyfarth Shaw LLP (April 27, 2016)
“UCR and Provider Fraud Litigation -- What Every Health Plan Fiduciary and Plan Sponsor Needs To Know,” Webinar presented by Seyfarth Shaw (February 13, 2014)
“QPAM Compliance Audits: How Asset Managers Can Minimize Regulatory Risks and the Cost of Breach,” Webinar presented by Seyfarth Shaw (May 1, 2013)
“ERISA Fiduciary Investment Basics 2013,” presented by the Practicing Law Institute (February 6, 2013)
“ERISA Fiduciary Investment Basics 2012,” presented by the Practicing Law Institute (February 8, 2012)
“2011 Multiemployer Pension Plan Update for Participating Employers,” Webinar presented by Seyfarth Shaw (June 7, 2011)
“ERISA Fiduciary Investment Basics 2011,” presented by the Practicing Law Institute (February 23, 2011)
“ERISA Class Action Trends: Trial and Settlement Strategies,” Webinar presented by Seyfarth Shaw (March 17, 2010)
“How ‘Stable’ is Your ERISA Plan’s Stable Value Fund?” Webinar presented by Seyfarth Shaw (May 2009)
“Plan Fiduciaries: Navigating the Current Economic Storm, “ Webinar presented by Seyfarth Shaw (June 2009)
Alicia C. McCarthy is Counsel in the firm’s Executive Compensation and Benefits Department. Ms. McCarthy advises clients with respect to executive compensation and employee benefit matters involving mergers and acquisitions, spin-offs, joint ventures, bankruptcy reorganizations, financings as well as plan compliance. She has extensive experience in ERISA fiduciary matters, including plan governance and the investment of plan assets. Her recent representations include advising on exemptions from the Department of Labor and de-risking transactions.
Ms. McCarthy is a member of the Committee of Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York. She is the recipient of the Pro Bono Publico Award (2010, 2011 and 2014) for her services to the Retirement and Benefits Committee of The Legal Aid Society. She is also recognized in Best Lawyers of America (2012-2017) in Employee Benefits (ERISA) law and New York Super Lawyers (2013-2016).
Ms. McCarthy received her B.A. in 1981 from Georgetown University and her J.D. cum laude in 1984 from Brooklyn Law School, where she was a member of the Journal of International Law.
Erin K. Cho is a principal in the Fiduciary Responsibility practice group at Groom Law Group where she advises clients on a wide range of matters involving ERISA's fiduciary and conflict of interest rules.
Ms. Cho has extensive experience advising broker-dealers, asset managers and investment bankers with respect to the many and varied services and financial products (including complex structured products and derivatives) they offer to U.S. pension plans. She counsels hedge funds and private equity clients on the consequences of accepting investments by benefit plan investors, as well as plan assets and prohibited transaction concerns arising in connection with venture capital investments and corporate transactions. She counsels plan sponsors on all aspects of ERISA fiduciary compliance, including plan governance, plan expense issues and the selection and monitoring of plan investment options. Ms. Cho also represents clients on exemption requests and regulatory initiatives and has testified on behalf of clients and industry groups before the U.S. Department of Labor's Employee Benefits Security Administration.
Ms. Cho regularly writes on pension investment matters for a variety of publications. She is a frequent speaker on ERISA matters, including at events sponsored by the Practicing Law Institute, Financial Services Roundtable and American Bankers Association. She is the co-chair of the Practicing Law Institute's annual conference, "ERISA: The Evolving World".
Erin Rose Miner is Director and Counsel at Credit Suisse Securities (USA) LLC in New York and Head of the ERISA, Executive Compensation and Employee Benefits group. Ms. Miner advises the Bank with respect to ERISA's fiduciary responsibility and prohibited transaction rules that arise in connection with the Bank's broker-dealer and asset management operations. Ms. Miner also serves as counsel with respect to the Bank’s global equity compensation programs as well as the tax-qualified and welfare plans maintained by the Bank and its subsidiaries.
Ms. Miner received her undergraduate degree in Finance from the University of Maryland, College Park and received her law degree from New York Law School.
Ira G. Bogner is chair of the firm’s Tax Department and a member of the Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Group. Ira represents a varied list of clients, including financial service companies, entertainment industry clients, and tax-exempt organizations, and also actively represents individual executives in executive compensation matters.
Areas of Concentration
Ira has provided guidance to clients on a wide variety of matters in the areas of employee benefits and executive compensation, including:
Ira counsels clients with respect to the tax, securities law disclosure, corporate governance, stock exchange and other requirements relevant to executive compensation arrangements. Ira also provides advice regarding equity arrangements, employment agreements, change in control agreements and all other types of executive compensation arrangements, including guidance regarding “409A,” “162m,” “457A,” and “280G.”
Ira frequently is called on to structure and analyze alternative investments for pension trusts and other exempt organizations. He also works with the firm’s corporate and real estate lawyers in structuring and maintaining investment funds that include participation by pension plans. Through his work in the investment fund area Ira has obtained substantial experience in applying the rules provided under the “plan asset” regulations, including the operation of venture capital operating companies and real estate operating companies. He has assisted in the formation of private equity, real estate, infrastructure and hedge funds, including “fund of funds.” Ira also has advised clients on both avoiding ERISA “plan asset” status and operating an investment fund in accordance with ERISA.
Ira has published a number of articles in publications such as The New York Law Journal, The New Jersey Law Journal, The Daily Deal, The Journal of Pension Planning and Compliance, Mergers and Acquisitions (The Monthly Tax Journal), The Journal of Taxation and Regulation of Financial Institutions, The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel, European Private Equity & Venture Capital Associations, The LPA Anatomised and Private Equity International and has been named to the Board of Advisors of the Journal of Taxation and Regulation of Financial Institutions. He also has lectured on topics such as the classification of workers, drafting employment agreements, equity alternatives for senior executives, investing IRA assets, the plan asset regulations, shareholder approval of equity plans, Code Section 409A, and key provisions for ERISA investors investing in a private equity fund.
Ira has been recognized and ranked by various directories. US Legal 500 has carried the following comments: “Ira Bogner is ‘available, responsive and knowledgeable;” “Ira Bogner ‘provides a level of comfort with respect to business issues that is rare in the world of ERISA;” “Ira Bogner is the ‘go-to guy for fund sponsors needing help with ERISA.’"
New York City Bar Association:
Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Committee
ERISA Fiduciary Duties and Plan Investments Subcommittee
Awards & Recognition
Chambers USA: New York: Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation 2014-2016
Chambers USA: Nationwide: Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation 2016
The Legal 500 United States: International Tax 2016
The Legal 500 United States: Labor & Employment - Executive Compensation 2009, 2013-2016
The Legal 500 United States: Tax - Domestic Tax - East Coast 2014-2015
The Legal 500 United States: Tax - Employee Benefits 2008-2011
The Legal 500 United States: Investment Fund Formation - Private Equity Funds 2008-2009
The Legal 500 United States: Investment Fund Formation - Alternative/Hedge Funds 2009
The Legal 500 United States: Investment Fund Formation & Management 2008-2009
The Legal 500 United States: Corporate and Finance Edition 2007
Best Lawyers in America 2012-2017
Top 100 New York Super Lawyers 2010
New York Super Lawyers 2007-2016
Fellow, American Bar Foundation
Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation
Private Investment Funds
Private Equity Real Estate
Fordham University School of Law, J.D., 1990
Brandeis University, B.A., 1987
Admissions & Qualifications
Jeffrey Ross is an Executive Compensation & ERISA partner resident in Fried Frank’s New York office. He joined the Firm in 2008 and became a partner in 2009.
Mr. Ross has experience with a wide range of benefits and compensation matters and the numerous federal and state laws that govern the field. In addition to assisting in the design and operation of various tax qualified, non-qualified, and equity based compensation arrangements, he has counseled extensively regarding the ERISA issues relating to the organization and operation of private investment funds.
Mr. Ross is consistently recognized by Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business as a leading individual in Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation. He is also consistently recognized by Legal 500 in Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation.
Mr. Ross received his JD from New York University School of Law in 2001, where he was an Associate Casebook Editor of the law school’s Moot Court Casebook. He received his BA, cum laude, with honors in Latin Literature, from Yale University in 1998. Mr. Ross is admitted to practice in New York.
Patrick S. Menasco is a partner in Steptoe's Washington and New York offices, where he is a member of the firm’s Litigation Department and Tax Group.
Mr. Menasco represents and advises a diverse range of clients in matters relating to the investment of employee benefit capital. For over a decade, Mr. Menasco has focused on advising global banks, broker-dealers and asset managers with respect to their derivatives, prime brokerage, securities lending, asset management, and other businesses. Mr. Menasco has particularly deep experience in stable value funds and products and regularly advises large asset managers on structuring and managing multi-billion dollar stable value portfolios. In recent years, Mr. Menasco has gained significant experience assisting asset managers and broker-dealers in addressing impaired assets, including in the context of auction rate securities, securities lending pools, and special purpose vehicles. Mr. Menasco leads the firm’s ERISA prime brokerage and derivatives sub-practice.
Mr. Menasco has represented numerous clients in audits, investigations, exemption requests, and regulatory initiatives before the US Department of Labor. He has also represented clients before the US Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, the US District Courts, and the US Courts of Appeal.
From 1995 to 1998, Mr. Menasco served as a counselor and litigator in the Office of the General Counsel, US Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, where his practice focused on plan termination, prohibited transaction, employment, and appellate matters.
Select Seminars & Events
"Repos, Securities Lending and Stable Value Funds," PLI, February 3, 2016
"Regulatory Interaction with Plans," PLI, August 4, 2015
“Department of Labor, Office of Exemption Determinations: Updates, Issues, and Perspectives," PLI, March 31, 2015
“Understanding Basic Financial Institution Activities,” PLI, February 4, 2015
“Fiduciary Responsibilities/Prohibited Transactions,” PLI, August 4, 2014
“Department of Labor, Office of Exemption Determinations: Updates, Issues and Perspectives," PLI, April 1, 2014
The Department of Labor's Final Rule Redefining Fiduciary
April 13, 2016
The DOL's Re-Proposed Redefinition of Fiduciary
May 1, 2015
ERISA Advisory - Department of Labor Releases Proposed 408(b)(2) Fee Disclosure “Guide” Regulations
April 17, 2014
ERISA Advisory - Department of Labor Releases 408(b)(2) Fee Disclosure Regulations
March 9, 2012
ERISA Advisory - CFTC Announces New Swap Rules
February 2, 2012
ERISA Advisory - Labor Department Issues Final Regulations Addressing Provision of Investment Advice to Participants and Beneficiaries of Self-Directed Individual Account Plans and IRAs
October 31, 2011
ERISA Advisory - Proposed Regulation Redefining Fiduciary
November 5, 2010
ERISA Advisory - ERISA Advisory Council Makes Stable Value Fund Recommendations to Labor Department
November 17, 2009
Areas of Practice
Bar & Court Admissions
Fiduciary Advisory Services
HOWARD PIANKO is the head of Seyfarth Shaw’s New York benefits practice and the national chair of its Fiduciary Advisory Services practice group. During his more than thirty-five years of experience in employee benefits law and executive compensation, he has counseled both domestic and international clients on matters running the full benefits gamut. His current practice focuses extensively on fiduciary and plan governance matters, executive compensation (including both domestic and cross-border equity and incentive plans) as well as benefit and employment considerations in M&A transactions, including post-transaction implementation and restructuring.
He is a Charter Fellow in the American College of Employee Benefits Counsel and a founding member of the International Pension and Employee Benefits Lawyers Association. He has been recognized for his professional expertise by, among others, Chambers, Legal 500, Best Lawyers in America and Super Lawyers; and also designated as a BTI Client Service All-Star. He originated the PLI Pension Investment program and has been co-chairing this annual program since 1991. He also co-chairs the PLI Basic Fiduciary Investment Program.
Robert J. Raymond is a partner based in the New York office of Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP.
Mr. Raymond’s practice focuses on organizing and advising private investment funds, including fund formation for buy-out funds and other “alternative investment” funds. He also advises private investment funds in their investment activities and internal governance, including manager spin-offs, shareholder arrangements with portfolio companies and among consortium members, all forms of compensation arrangements, including co-investment arrangements and carried interest programs and “founders” arrangements. Mr. Raymond also advises clients on all aspects of executive compensation and corporate governance matters.
Mr. Raymond is distinguished by Chambers USA, The Best Lawyers in America, The Legal 500 U.S., Super Lawyers, Lawdragon and The Legal 500 U.S. as a leading lawyer.
His recent experience includes acting as counsel to Credit Suisse in raising a $1 billion emerging markets credit opportunity fund; MBK Partners in raising its most recent fund; Deutsche Bank in connection with certain fund of funds; JPMorgan in connection with private equity conduit vehicles; Helios Capital in raising their second and largest pan-Africa investment fund to date; TPG in connection with several carry arrangements with industry experts and other individuals; and the spinoff of several managers from large financial institutions. Also counsel to Citigroup Alternative Investments in connection with various carried interest and co-investment programs and to Angelo, Gordon in connection with ERISA fund matters.
Mr. Raymond joined the firm in 1995 and became a partner in 2003. He received a J.D., summa cum laude, from New York Law School in 1994, and an undergraduate degree from the University of the State of New York, Regents College in 1989. From 1994 to 1995 he served as law clerk for the Honorable Roger J. Miner of the U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit.
Mr. Raymond regularly speaks on private investment related topics, including at PLI and ALI-ABA seminars and the IBA/ABA International Conference on Private Investment Funds. He also co-authored an article in the International Finance Law Review entitled “Out of Sync” which compares the EU and US approaches to regulating private investment funds.
Mr. Raymond is a member of the Bar in New York.
Sarah Downie is a partner in Weil’s Executive Compensation & Benefits practice and is based in the New York office. Ms. Downie advises clients on all aspects of compensation and employee benefits.
Ms. Downie has extensive experience in the executive compensation and employee benefits aspects of mergers, acquisitions and financings. She represents senior executives and companies in the negotiation and drafting of employment and severance agreements. She also advises as to the design and operation of executive and employee benefit arrangements including equity compensation and cash incentive plans, change in control and retention arrangements and nonqualified deferred compensation plans. In addition, Ms. Downie regularly advises employers on the design and operation of tax-qualified retirement plans, including 401(k) plans, 403(b) plans and 457(b) plans, as well as health and welfare benefit plans.
Ms. Downie advises clients on pension plan investment and compliance with ERISA’s fiduciary obligations and prohibited transaction rules. She regularly counsels private fund sponsors in connection with ERISA’s “plan asset” regulations and with VCOC, REOC and similar issues.
Ms. Downie is recognized for Employee Benefits by Super Lawyers. She serves as Chair of the New York City Bar Association’s Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Committee and is a member of the Steering Committee of the New York Chapter of Worldwide Employee Benefits Network.
Shannon Barrett concentrates his practice on ERISA-related litigation and on providing advice relating to Title I of ERISA. He has been involved in litigating a broad range of ERISA matters at both the trial and appellate levels, with a particular focus on fiduciary issues. In addition to his litigation practice, Shannon has assisted clients in responding to regulatory investigations and has counseled clients, including financial institutions and plan sponsors, on ERISA issues such as fiduciary structure, fee disclosure, and compliance with ERISA’s prohibited transaction provisions. Shannon also has advised independent fiduciaries in their representation of employee benefit plans’ rights in connection with ERISA and securities settlements.
Shannon is a frequent thought leader on ERISA-related topics and serves as the co-editor of the ERISA Litigation Reporter. He was recognized by Chambers USA with an “Up and Coming” designations in the ERISA Litigation (Nationwide) category.
HONORS & AWARDS
As Managing Counsel, U.S. Compensation & Benefits, Glenn Butash provides legal advice to Nokia (formerly Alcatel-Lucent) with respect to the company’s U.S. defined benefit, defined contribution, and employee welfare benefit plans and deferred compensation arrangements. He advises the company on plan design issues and prepares plan amendments; provides legal advice to the company with respect to plan administration; assists with employee and retiree communications; provides benefits-related legal support in connection with acquisitions, divestitures and other corporate transactions; works on ERISA fiduciary matters arising from the investment of plan assets; addresses executive compensation issues; and oversees employee benefits litigation on behalf of the company and its plans. He also regularly advises the company’s fiduciary committees regarding their ERISA duties.
Glenn received his J.D. from Fordham University School of Law and his B.A. from Boston University. Prior to joining Nokia, Glenn was in private practice in New Jersey and New York.
Michael Albano is a partner based in the New York office of Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP.
Mr. Albano’s practice focuses on executive compensation and benefits matters, including disclosure, governance, taxation, design and negotiation of agreements and arrangements, as well as the executive compensation and benefits aspects of mergers and acquisitions; pension investment and ERISA fiduciary matters; private equity compensation; and employment law and related matters.
Mr. Albano is recognized as a leading employee benefits and executive compensation lawyer by Chambers USA, The Legal 500 U.S., The Best Lawyers in America and Super Lawyers.
Mr. Albano joined the firm in 2001 and became a partner in 2010. He received a J.D. degree, magna cum laude, from the Georgetown University Law Center in 2001, and an undergraduate degree, magna cum laude, from Duke University in 1998.
Mr. Albano is a member of the Bar in New York
Suzzanne is a managing director and associate general counsel, and advises the firm on products and services to ERISA (Employee Retirement Income Security Act) plans. She also assists in maintaining the firm’s internal retirement plans. Suzzanne is a co-chair of the Legal, Compliance and Internal Audit Asian Professionals Network and serves as a member of the Firmwide Asian Professionals Network Steering Committee. She joined Goldman Sachs in 2007 as a vice president in the ERISA & Benefits Group and was named managing director in 2013.
Prior to joining the firm, Suzzanne was an associate in the Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation group at Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP.
Suzzanne earned a BA from Columbia University and a JD from Harvard Law School.