Lisa A. Berkowitz Herrnson is a senior counsel in the Tax Department. She practices in the field of employee benefits and executive compensation law.
Lisa advises a diverse array of clients, including Fortune 500 companies, financial services companies, consulting firms, privately-held companies and tax-exempt organizations on all aspects of pension and welfare benefit plans. She counsels clients on the design, implementation and operation of 401(k), defined contribution, defined benefit, cash balance, and employee stock ownership plans, as well as cafeteria plans, flexible spending account programs and severance plans. Lisa counsels on compliance with ERISA, the Internal Revenue Code, and other laws affecting employee benefit plans, as well as issues concerning plan administration, qualification requirements, controlled group analysis, fiduciary issues and prohibited transaction issues.
In addition, Lisa provides advice to tax-exempt clients concerning the specific plans and requirements applicable to such organizations, including Section 403(b) plans, Section 457(b) plans and Section 457(f) arrangements.
Lisa advises clients on various executive compensation matters, including employment agreements, deferred compensation plans, supplemental executive retirement plans, long-term incentive plans and rabbi trusts and compliance with Section 409A. She also advises corporations on matters concerning stock options, restricted stock and other types of equity awards.
In connection with corporate mergers and acquisitions, Lisa analyzes compensation benefits issues and drafts and negotiates key benefits provisions, including provisions involving "golden parachute" tax issues, controlled groups, overfunded and underfunded defined benefit plans, post-retirement health and welfare liabilities, severance obligations, and COBRA obligations.
Lisa has authored a number of articles on employee benefits and executive compensation matters, and is a co-author of the chapter on ERISA in the 403(b) Answer Book.