Course Details

Early Retirement Incentives: Navigating The Legal Issues

Webinar: ID# 1014082
Recorded CD
About This Course:
When an employer must downsize its workforce, early retirement incentives are often an attractive alternative to involuntary layoffs, because they can help preserve morale during difficult times.

Even when an employer is not downsizing, early retirement incentives can save money by decreasing the length of the average career in industries where compensation levels are closely tied to seniority.

This training session will discuss ways of structuring early retirement incentives so that they will not only have the desired effect on the financial bottom line, but also stay on the right side of the law. The impact of federal and state age discrimination laws will be considered, as will collective bargaining, ERISA, employee benefit, and tax issues.


Important Considerations When Deciding Whether to Offer an Early Retirement Incentive
  • Identification of the Goals to Be Accomplished
  • Identification of the Eligible Employees
  • One-Time Incentive or an Ongoing Program?
  • Group Program, Individual "Ad Hoc" Agreements, or Both?
  • Identification of the Proposed Compensation and/or Benefits
  • Identification of the Funding Source
  • Review of Other Documents
  • Should a Release of Claims Be Required?
  • Employee Relations Issues
  • Legal Framework
The Economics of Early Retirement Incentives
  • Potential Savings
  • Hidden Costs
Age Discrimination in Employment Act Considerations
  • The Law Before OWBPA
  • OWBPA: Early Retirement Incentives Can Be Lawful
  • Restrictions Required by the ADEA
  • Integration With Retirement Payments
  • Enforcement of Window Periods
  • Reverse Age Discrimination
  • Risks Under State Age Discrimination Laws
  • Releases - Special OWBPA Rules
Collective Bargaining Issues
    ERISA and Employee Benefit Issues
    • Qualified Versus Nonqualified Plans
    • Supplemental Benefits?
    • Window Benefits Under a Qualified Defined Benefit Plan
    • Severance Plans and Top Hat Pension Plans
    • Fort Halifax, Ad Hoc and Deferred Compensation Arrangements
    • Other Nonqualified Pension Plans
    • Employment Contract Exemption
    • Consultant Agreements
    • Other Benefits
    • Plan Document Issues
    • Retiree Medical Benefits
    • COBRA Compliance
    Tax Issues
    • Review Tax Status of Each Payment
    • Deferred Compensation Compliance
    • Special Deferred Compensation Requirements for Tax-Exempt Employers
    • Review Tax Status of Each Benefit
    • Employee Benefit Nondiscrimination Requirements
    About Your Presenter

    Richard G. Kass
    • Member of Bond, Schoeneck & King, PLLC, which has one of the largest labor and employment practices in the state of New York
    • Has practiced exclusively in the field of labor and employment law for more than 28 years, representing management
    • His clients are in such diverse fields as education, social services, manufacturing and civil engineering
    • Graduate, Yale College and Harvard Law School
    Thaddeus J. Lewkowicz
    • Member of Bond, Schoeneck & King, PLLC, which also has one of the largest employee benefit practices in New York State
    • Practice focuses on employee benefits, executive compensation, and tax issues, including the preparation of early retirement window programs, early retirement incentive agreements, reduction in force programs, severance plans, Fort Halifax termination incentive programs, severance agreements, tenure buyout programs, and other employee benefit plans, programs and policies
    • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America® 2014 for Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law
    Early Retirement Incentives: Navigating The Legal Issues
    Available on CD format
    Course Details
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