Interested in training for your team? Click here to learn more

Employment Litigation and Claim Settlements: Maximizing Tax Benefits and Avoiding Penalties

Tax Considerations for Employers When Negotiating Settlement Agreements; Drafting Strategies

Note: CPE credit is not offered on this program

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

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Thursday, December 28, 2023

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE course will provide employment counsel and tax advisers guidance for structuring complex settlements and complying with complex tax reporting and withholding requirements applicable to employment claims. The panel will discuss best practices for employers to structure settlements, maximize tax benefits, and avoid penalties when allocating settlement proceeds. The panel will also discuss the reporting of payments and the tax implications of plaintiff requests in settlement agreements.


The law governing the approval of settlement agreements and the tax treatment of settlement payments is complex and continually evolving. Employment counsel and tax advisers negotiating settlement agreements for employers must understand how structuring a settlement, drafting a contract, allocating settlement proceeds, and making payments impact the employer's eligibility to claim tax deductions for the payments and related attorneys' fees.

There are also consequences for its obligations to pay payroll taxes, take withholdings, or file information returns for 1099 income. Improperly characterizing a settlement payment can result in tax liability, penalties, interest, or other unforeseen consequences.

To minimize potential adverse outcomes, employment counsel should carefully consider the settlement structure and the settlement agreement's language regarding taxable damages. Counsel should clearly state the purpose of all payments such as wages, damages, or attorneys' fees in the agreement, evaluate which payments are taxable and nontaxable, and identify the proper reporting forms for each type of claim.

Listen as our authoritative panel of employment and tax attorneys discusses the implications that employment counsel should consider and address when negotiating settlement agreements to resolve employment disputes.



  1. Settlement payments that must be reported
  2. Tax deductible settlement payments
  3. Settlement agreement structuring options
  4. Settlement agreement drafting strategies


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What types of options exist for structuring an employment settlement?
  • What settlement payments are taxable as wage income to the recipient in an employment dispute?
  • What types of settlement payments and related attorneys' fees are tax deductible by the employer?
  • What tax reporting obligations do employers have following a settlement?
  • What are best practices for anticipating and addressing tax issues when negotiating employment dispute settlement agreements?
  • What are the tax issues in the context of class actions and collective actions?


Fortuna, Julian
Julian A. Fortuna

Greenspoon Marder

Mr. Fortuna is a partner in Greenspoon Marder’s Corporate & Business practice group. With over 30 years of...  |  Read More

Turanchik, Stephen
Stephen J. Turanchik

Paul Hastings

Mr. Turanchik's practice focuses on tax controversy and litigation at the state and federal levels and tax advice...  |  Read More

Access Anytime, Anywhere

Strafford will process CLE credit for one person on each recording. All formats include course handouts.

To find out which recorded format will provide the best CLE option, select your state:

CLE On-Demand Video