Barry L. Klein is a nationally recognized employee benefits and executive compensation expert and the Chair of the Firm’s national Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation practice.
In the United States, social policy is delivered at the worksite, typically as part of the employee benefits and other types of compensation and work conditions that employers make available for employees. Social policy and labor market conditions are constantly changing, as are the priorities of those who enforce the law (including the plaintiffs’ bar). For more than 30 years, beginning with the Tax Reform Act of 1986 through the current discussions about national healthcare policy, Mr. Klein has advised employers on the potential opportunities and the limitations of their employee benefits and compensation arrangements. He has significant practical experience with every aspect of the design, maintenance and compliance of employee benefit plans and executive compensation arrangements.
Mr. Klein advises employers, including sole proprietors, partnerships, multinational companies, major hospital centers and universities with respect to the benefits and compensation they offer employees. He has counseled numerous employers with respect to employee benefits and executive compensation aspects of mergers and acquisitions, change in control and golden parachute analysis, withdrawal and mass withdrawal liability and consolidation and spin-off of plans. He advises 401(k) and 403(b) plan investment committees. He was on the litigation team that established cash balance plans as permissible in the Third Circuit. Register v. PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (3d Circ. 2007).
Mr. Klein also advises financial services clients with respect to their obligations under ERISA. He counsels these clients on the fiduciary responsibility that arises when they manage ERISA plan assets and offer products for plans, as well as opportunities for avoiding ERISA coverage. He has helped clients set up funds that comply with ERISA’s venture capital operating company and real estate operating company exemptions, and has helped clients set up hedge funds that are subject to or exempt from ERISA.
Mr. Klein’s career has provided him with a unique perspective on employee benefits and the employee benefits industry. He began his career at the National Office of the Internal Revenue Service in Washington, D.C. and he was in-house employee benefits counsel at the Prudential Insurance Company of America and at The Vanguard Group, Inc. Prudential and Vanguard are among the nation’s largest managers of retirement plan assets. Mr. Klein advised these companies with respect to the full range of services and products that they provide to employee benefit plans and was instrumental in the design and marketing of new products.
Mr. Klein is recognized by Chambers USA as a leader in Employee Benefits and Compensation law, stating that he is noted for his "deep experience in ERISA law" and is praised for his "ability to grasp issues quickly and approach things from a very practical business perspective." Chambers has also noted that he is "esteemed for his 'strong business sense and level-headed approach" and calls him an "’extremely knowledgeable' employee benefits attorney, especially in the area of executive compensation."
American Bar Association
Pennsylvania Bar Association
Philadelphia Bar Association
Mr. Klein is an adjunct professor of law in the Graduate Tax Program at Temple University James E. Beasley School of Law, where he designed and teaches courses on the taxation of executive compensation and the fiduciary responsibility and investment management aspects of employee benefit plans. He was an adjunct professor at the Philadelphia Institute for Paralegal Training. He serves on the Board of Directors and is Immediate Past President of Ohev Shalom of Bucks County in Richboro, Pennsylvania.