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Professional background
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Brian L.Gaj

Senior CounselBrian.Gaj@ThompsonHine.com
Cleveland

O 216.566.5931

Brian L.Gaj

Senior Counsel

Focus Areas

Career highlights include the following:

  • Negotiated with IRS National Office to obtain favorable IRS determination letter for cash balance plan without conceding on $60 million issue
  • Provided litigation support and analysis for lump sum defined benefit plan litigation, which litigator valued at $10 million
  • Reviewed and negotiated side letters for $100s of millions of private equity fund investments by ERISA pension plans, including comments that led to restructuring of funds to address ERISA concerns
  • Advised large financial institution on ERISA provisions of ISDA, foreign exchange, and forward transaction agreements
  • Assisted freight service company in “bet-the-company” representation of multiemployer withdrawal liability assessment, including filing appeal and arbitration and obtaining settlement that kept company in business
  • Extraordinary service and judgment for every day matters, including: (i) drafting pension and 401(k) plan documents, summary plan descriptions, participant communications and claim denials, (ii) preparing regulatory submissions including IRS determination letter filings, private letter ruling requests, and EPCRS submissions, (iii) counseling on pension and 401(k) plan corrections, (v) advising on fiduciary and prohibited transaction matters, and (iv) counseling clients on Internal Revenue Code and ERISA aspects of employer stock contributions to defined benefit plans, lump sum windows and de-risking pension investments.

Professional Associations

  • American Bar Association

Education

  • Cornell University Law School, J.D., 1984,
    magna cum laude
    ,

    Order of the Coif

  • Case Western Reserve University, B.A., 1981,
    magna cum laude
    ,

    Phi Beta Kappa

Bar Admissions

  • Ohio
  • Michigan
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