Amanda E. Layton is a partner in the Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Practice Group of Duane Morris LLP.
Ms. Layton counsels employers in regards to all aspects of employee benefit plan legal compliance including the requirements of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) and the Internal Revenue Code which apply to tax qualified retirement plans, nonqualified retirement plans, executive compensation arrangements and health and welfare plans.
As part of her practice, Ms. Layton represents employers undergoing plan examinations by the Internal Revenue Service ("IRS") and the United States Department of Labor ("DOL"). She also routinely advises and represents employers in corrective plan filings before the IRS and DOL. Her wide range of experience includes successful filings for employer plans under the IRS Voluntary Correction Program ("VCP"), as well as the DOL Voluntary Fiduciary Compliance Program ("VFCP") and DOL Delinquent Filer Voluntary Compliance Program "DFVCP").
Ms. Layton also partners with members of the firm’s corporate practice group and serves as benefits counsel on significant corporate mergers and acquisitions undertaken by firm clients. Her experience includes the due diligence and resolution of employee benefit plans and ERISA issues faced by both purchasers and sellers in stock and asset transactions.
She has been recognized as a "Rising Star" in the field of employee benefits law by Philadelphia magazine and Law and Politics. She is a frequent speaker on employee benefits topics for both the firm’s training institute for employers, the Duane Morris Institute, as well as for prominent external organizations including the Pennsylvania Bar Institute, Rossdale CLE and the PENJERDEL Employee Benefits and Compensation Association (PEBA). Recently, she has authored and presented courses on 401(k) plan disclosure requirements, the legal challenges associated with employer use of independent contractors under employer benefit plans and employer compliance with Internal Revenue Code Section 409A. She has also had articles featured on Kiplingers.com, BusinessWeek.com and in The Legal Intelligencer.
In addition to her law practice, Ms. Layton is a member of the Board of Directors of the PENJERDEL Employee Benefits and Compensation Association, a prominent membership organization for benefits and compensation professionals in the Philadelphia area. She also volunteers on a frequent basis for community organizations. She most recently served as a trustee of Burlington County College in Mount Laurel, NJ and as a member of the Borough Council in Riverton, New Jersey.
Ms. Layton is a cum laude graduate of Rutgers University School of Law and earned her M.B.A. from Rutgers University School of Business. She received her undergraduate degree from Villanova University.
- Represented Clarion Capital Partners and its portfolio company, HR Outsourcing Holdings, Inc., a professional employer organization based in Atlanta, Georgia, in the acquisition of the outstanding capital stock of Fortune Financial, Inc., another professional employer organization based in Tampa, Florida, as well as the related financing transaction.
- Employee benefits counsel to a supplier of materials, tools, equipment and parts for the pipeline construction industry, and a portfolio company of a private equity firm, in a $4 million stock acquisition.
- Represents the largest software solutions company (NYSE-traded) with respect to 401(k) plan, section 409A and health and welfare benefit compliance. Provide day-to-day assistance with respect to all aspects of legal compliance.
- Benefits counsel to client in its acquisition of majority interest in a New Jersey-based manufacturer of printed circuit boards, for an undisclosed sum.
- Benefits counsel in strategic acquisitions undertaken by German company.
- Benefits counsel to American Infrastructure MLP Fund L.P. (AIM), a California-based private equity firm, in its acquisition of a controlling interest in the Quik-Way Group. Quik-Way owns and operates more than 110 gas and convenience stores in Texas.
- Benefits counsel to non-for-profit agency in IRS VCP filing of 403(b) plan and negotiated unprecedented extended repayment by agency to plan to ensure both correction and continued ability of the agency to operate.
- Benefits counsel and negotiated settlement of DOL examination of 401(k) plan for large pharmaceutical company.
- Benefits counsel representing $74 million union health and welfare fund in DOL examination, resulting in no DOL findings.
- Served as special outside counsel to the Board of Trustees of the Colorado Public Employees Retirement Association and authored the legal opinion affirmed by the Colorado Supreme Court denying an attempt to get the records of the Association's top benefit recipients.
Areas of Practice
- Employee Benefits Law
- Employment Law
- New Jersey
- Rutgers School of Law - Camden, J.D., 2005
- Rutgers University School of Business, M.B.A., 2005
- Villanova University, B.A., 1993
- Philadelphia Bar Association
- Employee Benefits Committee
- Burlington County Bar Association
- Employment Subcommittee, Civil Practice Section
- PENJERDEL Employee Benefits and Compensation Association
- Board of Directors
Honors and Awards
- Service Award, Burlington County Community College, 2008-2011
- Listed in Pennsylvania Rising Stars and Super Lawyers, 2008 and 2010
Civic and Charitable Activities
- Burlington County Republican Committee
- Member, 2003-present
- Burlington County Community College, Mount Laurel, N.J.
- Trustee, 2008-2011
- Burlington County Task Force/Advisory Committee for School Consolidation and Shared Services
- Member, 2009-2011
- Borough Council, Riverton, New Jersey
- Councilwoman, 2012-2013
- Contributor, Duane Morris Benefits Law Blog
- Co-author, "EEOC Issues Regulations Governing Employer Wellness Programs," Duane Morris Alert, June 13, 2016
- Co-author, "U.S. Supreme Court Decisions on DOMA and Same-Sex Marriage Have Far-Reaching Implications for Employers," Duane Morris Alert, June 28, 2013
- Contributor, "Leased Employees and Benefit Plans," Insights & Strategies Magazine, February 2012
- Quoted in "Grandfathered Status Rule's Impact on Group Health Care" by Allen Smith, HR Magazine, June 22, 2010
- Co-author, "An Employer Checklist of 401(k) Plan Responsibilities Under ERISA," The Legal Intelligencer, May 26, 2010
- Co-author, "IRS Offers Relief for Government-Sponsored Pension Plans in Determination Letter Process," Duane Morris Alert, August 17, 2009
Selected Speaking Engagements
- Author and Presenter, "Navigating and Surviving the Governmental Employee Benefit Plan Audit," Pennsylvania Bar Institute's 22nd Annual Employment Law Institute, Philadelphia, April 28, 2016
- Speaker, "Your Employer Wellness Program - The New EEOC Guidance and What is Next," PENJERDEL Employee Benefits and Compensation Association (PEBA), Philadelphia, June 1, 2015
- Speaker, Duane Morris' Developments in Workplace Law and Practice 2015, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Atlanta, Georgia, and Cherry Hill, New Jersey
- Co-presenter, "What is New for Employers: Wellness Programs under HIPAA and the Proposed EEOC Regulations," Duane Morris Institute seminar, May 12, 2015
- Speaker, "Employee Benefits 101: ERISA & Beyond for the Non-ERISA Lawyer," The Burlington County Bar Association's Employment Law Subcommittee, Mt. Holly, New Jersey October 30, 2014
- Speaker, "Same-Sex Couples and Your Benefit Plans: The Windsor Decision and Beyond," Duane Morris' Developments in Workplace Law and Practice 2014, Philadelphia and Cherry Hill, New Jersey
- Faculty Member, "The Affordable Care Act: What is Next for Employers," Pennsylvania Bar Institute 20th Annual Employment Law Institute, Philadelphia, April 25, 2014
- Speaker, "Employment Law: Benefits Issues in Agreements and Releases," The Burlington County Bar Association's Employment Law Subcommittee, Mt. Holly, September 17, 2013
- Presenter, Duane Morris Institute, "Fixing it Under 409A," July 2011
- Presenter, Duane Morris Institute, "Independent Contractor Status Under Assault," February 2010