Eric R. Keller is a partner in the Employment Law practice of Paul Hastings and is based in the firm’s Washington, D.C. office. He represents clients in all aspects of executive compensation and employee benefits law. In this regard, he advises clients regarding tax, labor (including ERISA), financial accounting, securities, and litigation issues. He designs and prepares plan documents and participant communications, negotiates service-provider contracts, and assists clients in developing and operating efficient and prudent plan administration practices. Mr. Keller often advises clients on employment and employee benefits matters in connection with business transactions by conducting due diligence, negotiating and preparing contract provisions, addressing transitional issues, and developing strategies to minimize financial expense and taxation.
A substantial portion of his practice is devoted to the design and administration of tax-qualified retirement plans. Mr. Keller frequently advises plan fiduciaries how to reduce their risk of fiduciary liability for plan investments and represents sponsors of employee benefit plans in voluntary compliance programs maintained by the Internal Revenue Service and the Department of Labor. In the executive compensation area, he advises boards of directors and compensation committees on how to design and implement executive compensation arrangements that comply with Dodd-Frank, Sarbanes-Oxley, stock exchange listing requirements, securities disclosure requirements, and other corporate governance standards.
In the employee welfare benefit plan area, Mr. Keller has been chiefly responsible for advising firm clients on Health Care Reform, HIPAA privacy compliance for group health plans, as well as Health Reimbursement Accounts (HRAs), Health Savings Accounts (HSAs), and other consumer-driven health plan designs. In addition, he represents plan fiduciaries in administrative claim disputes with participants and contractual disputes with service providers.
Accolades and Recognitions
- Listed by Chambers USA as a leading lawyer in the executive compensation and employee benefits field
Speaking Engagements and Publications
- Frequent writer and speaker on employee benefits topics
- Speaker for the Practicing Law Institute, Bureau of National Affairs (BNA), Employee Benefits Institute of America, American Benefits Council and PLANSPONSOR
- Contributing author for Cafeteria Plans, published by the Employee Benefits Institute of America, and www.compensationstandards.com, the premier website for executive compensation trends and practices
- Co-author of the chapter titled "Fiduciary Disclosure Obligations" in the Fiduciary Law treatise published by BNA
- Other recent publications include: “Your Health Plan’s Hidden Dangers: Litigation and Compliance Risks in the New Health Care Reform Environment”, BNA Pension & Benefits Daily (Dec. 16, 2011); “So You Think You are Safe? Board Members and Personal Liability Under ERISA”, Corporate Governance Advisor (June 2010); and “Health Care Reform Requires Action in 2010: Action Items Employers Must Implement Before Year End”, BNA Pension & Benefits Daily (Sept. 2, 2010)
- New York University School of Law, LL.M., 1996
- Capital University Law School, J.D. 1995 (magna cum laude; editor-in-chief, Capital University Law Review)
- Ohio University, B.B.A., 1992 (cum laude)
- Served as law clerk to the Honorable Maurice B. Foley, United States Tax Court