Ellen V. Benson

Principal

ellen-benson
  • JD, magna cum laude, Cornell Law School, 1997; Administrative Editor, Cornell Law Review ; Order of the Coif
  • BA, cum laude, Bryn Mawr College, 1994

Qualifications

  • Massachusetts, 1998
  • Honorable Gene Carter, U.S. District Court for the District of Maine (2003 - 2004)
  • Honorable Gene Carter, U.S. District Court for the District of Maine (1997 - 1998)
  • American Bar Association

Ellen V. Benson

Principal

Ellen Benson advises a wide range of employers in all aspects of their employee benefit programs, including retirement, health & welfare, and deferred compensation plans. Ellen’s clients include hospitals, universities and other tax-exempt organizations as well as for-profit employers.

Ellen assists clients in their efforts to develop and maintain competitive employee benefit plans, and her work includes plan design and drafting, assistance with vendor searches, vendor contract negotiations and employee communications. Clients rely on Ellen to keep them apprised of new legislation, regulations, and agency guidance, and she routinely works with clients to keep their plan documents in compliance and to obtain favorable determination letters from the IRS for their qualified plans. She also provides advice on the full range of day-to-day questions that arise in the administration of employee benefit plans.

Prior to joining the Benefits Consulting Group in 2004, Ellen was an associate at Ropes & Gray in the Tax & Benefits Department from 1998 to 2003, with a focus on employee benefit matters.

Experience

  • DOL and IRS Correction Programs: Ellen works closely with clients to resolve complex compliance issues and frequently represents plan sponsors in connection with filings under the voluntary correction programs offered by the DOL and the IRS. She also advises clients with respect to benefit plan matters that arise in the course of DOL and IRS audits.
  • Fiduciary Matters: Ellen regularly advises plan sponsors and their retirement committees with respect to their fiduciary responsibilities under ERISA, including governance structure and related best practices. Clients seek her guidance on all types of fiduciary questions and obligations, including matters involving investment education and advice programs, participant fee disclosure, and complex benefit claims.
  • Tax-Exempt Deferred Compensation: Ellen assists her tax-exempt clients in their efforts to develop tax-efficient and compliant deferred compensation arrangements, including supplemental executive retirement plans, 457(b) plans, and individual employment and separation agreements. She also assists clients with the design, drafting, and communication of early retirement incentive programs.