Benefit Plans in M&A: Transitioning Pension, Savings and Welfare Plans

Best Practices to Avoid Liability for Underfunding, Plan Defects and Unintended Benefits

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A

Conducted on Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Recorded event now available

Program Materials

This CLE webinar will provide perspectives and experiences to help counsel navigate through employee benefit issues in mergers and acquisitions that are often overlooked and that can materially affect the value of a transaction. To avoid unexpected liability, benefits counsel must be familiar with the complicated rules that apply to the transition of benefits and be proficient in implementing them.


Because of their potential significant cost, the treatment of employee benefits is typically one of the key components of any merger and acquisition activity. Counsel must identify potential liabilities when transitioning employee benefit plans, avoid unanticipated liabilities and understand how the benefit plan liabilities will affect the transaction.

Among other important topics covered will be the treatment of single-employer defined-benefit pension plans. Such plans often carry significant unfunded termination liabilities that can impact the acquirer’s balance sheet and produce joint and several liabilities for the controlled group of the plan sponsor.

Employers will also be faced with liabilities stemming from subsidized health and life insurance benefits for retirees. Disputes over such retiree welfare benefits have resulted in significant litigation over the past two decades. If such plans are improperly amended or terminated, employers can be exposed to substantial liability.

Listen as our experienced panelists provide best practices for avoiding significant M&A liabilities with regard to benefits subject to ERISA. Participants in this CLE webinar will come away with the information and perspectives crucial to ensuring this important issue is addressed appropriately.



The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What are the potential liabilities when transitioning employee benefit plans?
  • What are best practices to avoid unanticipated liabilities?
  • How will the benefit plan liabilities affect the transaction?


Michael R. Bergmann
Michael R. Bergmann

Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom

Mr. Bergmann counsels clients on employee benefits, ERISA and executive compensation matters. A significant portion of...  |  Read More

Alessandra K. Murata
Alessandra K. Murata

Goodwin Procter

Ms. Murata’s practice focuses on advising public and private companies, boards, private equity clients, asset...  |  Read More

Ian L. Levin
Ian L. Levin

Schulte Roth & Zabel

Mr. Levin’s practice concentrates on executive compensation and employee benefits, with a focus on the employee...  |  Read More