Stefan P. Smith has extensive experience in employee benefits and executive compensation law. He works with both public and private entities to establish and ensure the continued compliance of tax-qualified defined contribution and defined benefit retirement plans, including 401(k)/profit sharing plans, traditional defined benefit plans, money purchase plans, employee stock ownership plans, and cash balance plans.
In addition, Stefan assists with employee benefit matters arising during mergers and acquisitions and works with all forms of health and welfare plans and executive and equity-based compensation, including incentive and non-qualified stock options, restricted stock awards, stock appreciation rights, employee stock purchase plans, phantom equity, performance unit and bonus plans, SERPs and other excess benefit plans, and non-qualified deferred compensation plans.
Representative Experience :
- Advise public and private employers regarding the establishment, documentation, and administration of all forms of tax-qualified retirement plans, including 401(k) plans, traditional defined benefit plans, money purchase plans, employee stock ownership plans, and cash balance plans, covering both non-represented and collectively-bargained employees.
- Represent governmental and non-profit employers regarding the unique tax, ERISA, and state law issues associated with their sponsorship and administration of qualified plans under Section 401(a) of the Code, tax-deferred annuity plans under Section 403(b) of the Code, and deferred compensation arrangements under Sections 457(b) and 457(f) of the Code.
- Represent plan sponsors and administrators regarding the identification and management of fiduciary duties under ERISA and the design and execution of prudent procedures relating to plan administration and the selection and monitoring of investments and third-party service providers.
- Address income tax and ERISA issues relating to the investment by benefit plans in operating companies and other securities that are not publicly-offered, including the unrelated business taxable income and prohibited transaction risks associated with such investments.
- Provide counsel regarding reporting and disclosure obligations under applicable securities laws relating to benefit plans and compensation arrangements.
- Assist employer with federal and state withholding, reporting, and deposit obligations relating to employment and unemployment taxes and associated employee classification matters.
- Advise employers regarding international pension and other cross-border arrangements, including Puerto Rico qualified and dual-qualified plans, Canadian registered retirement savings plans, and United Kingdom pension schemes.
Professional Affiliations :
- Member, State Bar of Texas
- Member, State Bar of California
- Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law
- Adjunct Professor of Law
- Member, American Bar Association, Tax Section/Employee Benefits Committee
- Chair, Subcommittee on Multiple Employers, PEOs and Controlled and Affiliated Service Groups
- Past Chair of the Self Correction, Determination Letters and Other Administrative Practices Subcommittee
- Member, Dallas Bar Association
- Immediate Past Chair, Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Section
- J.D., with honors, The University of Texas School of Law, 1999
- B.A., Political Science, magna cum laude, Southern Methodist University, 1995
Admissions : Texas; California
Admitted To Practice :
- U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas
- U.S. District Court for the Central District of California
- U.S. Court of Federal Claims
- U.S. Tax Court
Rate : $$$