COVID-19 has had significant impacts on all aspects of business.  While employers are assessing how to handle immediate employee needs related to sick leave, family leave and benefits claims, employers should also consider the impact that changes in their workforce or economic conditions will have on their compensation plans and programs.

Click here to read the next post in a series addressing the impact that COVID-19 has had on executive compensation issues.  In their second post, our colleagues Andrea Rattner, Colleen Hart, Josh Miller, Seth Safra, Kate Napalkova and Katrine Magas discuss certain issues that employers should take into consideration before implementing salary and wage reductions.

Photo of Andrea Rattner Andrea Rattner

Andrea S. Rattner is a partner in the Tax Department and member of the Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Group. For more than 30 years, her practice has focused on a broad range of executive compensation and employee benefits matters, advising clients on…

Andrea S. Rattner is a partner in the Tax Department and member of the Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Group. For more than 30 years, her practice has focused on a broad range of executive compensation and employee benefits matters, advising clients on an ongoing basis as well as in the context of corporate transactions and other transformative and unique situations. Her clients include public and private companies, boards of directors, compensation committees and senior executives in a broad range of industries. Andrea is also involved in the Firm’s management, serving as a member of the Executive Committee and as the immediate past chair of the Tax Department.

Andrea counsels clients with respect to the tax, securities, corporate governance, stock exchange, ERISA and other implications affecting executive compensation arrangements. Andrea regularly provides advice regarding equity arrangements (such as stock options, restricted stock, RSUs, LLC/partnership interests and phantom equity), employment agreements, change-in-control agreements and all other types of compensation arrangements (including incentive awards, SERPs, deferred compensation and “409A” and “162(m)” compliant plans).

Photo of Colleen Hart Colleen Hart

Colleen Hart is a partner in the Tax Department and a member of the Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Group.

Colleen advises companies, executives and boards on complex executive compensation matters. She offers a multidisciplinary approach to compensation and benefits issues with a…

Colleen Hart is a partner in the Tax Department and a member of the Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Group.

Colleen advises companies, executives and boards on complex executive compensation matters. She offers a multidisciplinary approach to compensation and benefits issues with a focus on tax planning, securities laws and corporate governance. Matters she handles include the negotiation, structuring and implementation of employment and change-in-control agreements and deferred compensation, equity and incentive compensation plans. She advises on golden parachute and deduction limitation rules, securities reporting, registration and disclosure requirements and California employment laws. In addition, Colleen has extensive experience advising clients on compensation and benefits issues arising in mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings, bankruptcies and finance transactions.

Colleen is a contributing author of The 409A Handbook (BNA 2016) and lectures frequently on executive compensation matters. As a U.S. Navy veteran, Colleen devotes a substantial amount of time to organizations that provide legal and support services to U.S. veterans.

Photo of Joshua Miller Joshua Miller

Joshua M. Miller advises senior management teams and individual officers in designing, negotiating and implementing executive compensation arrangements.

Whether in the context of a merger or acquisition, an acceptance, transition or termination of employment, or the ordinary course of employee pay matters, Josh…

Joshua M. Miller advises senior management teams and individual officers in designing, negotiating and implementing executive compensation arrangements.

Whether in the context of a merger or acquisition, an acceptance, transition or termination of employment, or the ordinary course of employee pay matters, Josh provides legal counsel on a broad variety of securities, tax and employment matters critical to both companies and individuals. He focuses on employment and separation agreements, equity and cash incentive programs, and employee benefit matters in corporate transactions. Josh balances highly technical legal proficiency with practical considerations such as market trends, best pay practices and corporate governance.

Recently, Josh has been involved in management buyouts in the healthcare, technology and private funds space. Other recent matters include employment and separation agreements for C-suite executives; mergers and acquisitions in the hospitality, life sciences and financial services industries; and equity program design for REITs, oil and gas ventures and pharmaceutical companies.

Photo of Seth Safra Seth Safra

Seth J. Safra is a partner in Proskauer’s Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Group. Described by clients as “extremely knowledgeable, practical, and strategic,” Seth advises clients on compensation and benefit programs.

Seth’s experience covers a broad range of retirement plan designs, from traditional…

Seth J. Safra is a partner in Proskauer’s Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Group. Described by clients as “extremely knowledgeable, practical, and strategic,” Seth advises clients on compensation and benefit programs.

Seth’s experience covers a broad range of retirement plan designs, from traditional defined benefit to cash balance and floor-offset arrangements, ESOPs and 401(k) plans—often coordinating qualified and non-qualified arrangements. Seth also advises on ERISA compliance for investments, including the U.S. Department of Labor’s new conflict of interest (fiduciary) rules.

On the health and welfare side, Seth helps employers provide benefits that are cost-effective and competitive. He advises on health plans with HSAs and HRAs and also on severance and fringe benefit arrangements.

Photo of Kate Napalkova Kate Napalkova

Kate Napalkova is a partner in the Tax Department and a member of the Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Group.

Kate advises public and private companies, private investment funds, executives and boards on a broad range of compensation and employee benefits matters. Kate’s…

Kate Napalkova is a partner in the Tax Department and a member of the Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Group.

Kate advises public and private companies, private investment funds, executives and boards on a broad range of compensation and employee benefits matters. Kate’s practice includes the compensation and employee benefits aspects of mergers and acquisitions, reorganizations, spin-offs, initial public offerings, financings and other corporate transactions. Kate’s practice further focuses on advising clients across various industries on the negotiation, structuring and implementation of benefits and compensation plans and executive compensation arrangements; golden parachutes; securities reporting, registration and disclosure compliance; and corporate governance matters.

While in law school, Kate served as the editor-in-chief of the Fordham International Law Journal.

Kate is fluent in Russian.

Photo of Katrine Magas Katrine Magas

Katrine Magas is an associate in the Tax Department and a member of the Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Group. Katrine has extensive experience with executive compensation, equity compensation and tax-qualified plans, as well as compliance with Internal Revenue Code Sections 162(m), 280G…

Katrine Magas is an associate in the Tax Department and a member of the Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Group. Katrine has extensive experience with executive compensation, equity compensation and tax-qualified plans, as well as compliance with Internal Revenue Code Sections 162(m), 280G and 409A. Before joining Proskauer, she worked in Ernst & Young’s People Advisory Services, Reward group, focusing on executive compensation and global equity matters arising in financial services organizations.

Following law school, Katrine served as a judicial law clerk for Justice Nancy M. Saitta of the Supreme Court of Nevada.