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A Better Partnership

Employee Benefits/Executive Compensation


Employee benefits and executive compensation are key to attracting and retaining a talented workforce.

As one of the largest and most adept Employee Benefits/Executive Compensation law practices in Michigan, we offer an array of customizable employer services. We help Fortune 100 companies, small businesses, family-owned businesses, nonprofits, government entities and service providers design, develop, manage and maintain creative and compliant retirement plans, health and welfare plans and executive compensation programs. Delivering cost-effective expertise that will give your business a competitive advantage is at the core of our practice. We invite you to connect with our professionals and explore our services.


Justin W. Stemple



Related Publications


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Paula Cosgrove
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Kathryn DeVillez
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Karen Feinauer
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Stephanie Grant
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Anthony Kolenic
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Norbert Kugele
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Mary Jo Larson
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Heidi Lyon
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Brianna Richardson
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Justin Stemple
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Jennifer Watkins
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Lisa Zimmer

Honors & Awards

“They are among the very best in Michigan. They offer good expertise and value.”

“They are very professional and service oriented.” 
  • Chambers USA recognized Warner Norcross & Judd as a leading law firm in 2017, for the fifteenth year in a row, and announced Anthony J. Kolenic Jr., Mary Jo Larson and Lisa Zimmer from the Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Practice Group as “Leaders in the Field.” 
  • Best Lawyers in America 2016 has named the following Warner Norcross Employee Benefits/Executive Compensation attorneys in 2016: Anthony J. Kolenic Jr., Norbert F. Kugele, Mary Jo Larson, Heidi A. Lyon, Vernon P. Saper, Justin W. Stemple and Lisa B. Zimmer.
  • Super Lawyers named the following Employee Benefits/Executive Compensation Warner Norcross attorneys “Super Lawyers in 2016”: Anthony J. Kolenic Jr., Norbert F. Kugele, Mary Jo Larson, Vernon P. Saper and Lisa Zimmer, and named Heidi Lyon, Justin Stemple and Jennifer Watkins 2016 Rising Stars.
  • PulteGroup awarded Warner Norcross the honor of “Law Firm of the Year” for work led by Mary Jo Larson, Lisa Zimmer, Jennifer Watkins and Norbert Kugele.


Retirement and Savings Plans: Our attorneys help navigate the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) and ERISA in retirement plan design, negotiation of service provider agreements, fiduciary issues, governance and best practices for your retirement plans. We will work with you to draft and maintain a retirement plan specific to your needs:
  • 401(k)
  • 457(b), 457(f) and 403(b) plans
  • Profit-sharing plans
  • Defined benefit plans (including cash balance plans)
  • Stock bonus plans
  • Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs)
  • Government plans

ESOPS: The Warner Norcross ESOP practice began over 40 years ago and we have established more ESOPs than any other law firm in Michigan. Our practice includes initial consultation and education about ESOPs as a potential ownership transition strategy, helping structure an ESOP transaction, representing a company or an ESOP trustee through implementation of an ESOP and continued maintenance of the ESOP program after implementation. Let us help you with your current ESOP or begin the conversation.
Executive Compensation: Our team designs, drafts and implements executive compensation arrangements with the understanding of each type of arrangement, including SEC and IRC Section 409A compliance.
Health and Welfare Plans: We help manage and comply with the numerous laws that apply to health and welfare plans:
  • ACA
  • FMLA
  • GINA
  • IRC

HIPAA: We develop HIPAA policies, train employees on privacy and security policies and respond to breaches, complaints and subpoenas. We handle requests for access to health records and negotiate agreements with third-party administrators and contractors on behalf of our clients.
Affordable Care Act: Although the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was intended to make health insurance more accessible for a majority of the U.S. population, it imposes numerous and often complex requirements on employers. We help employers comply and avoid severe penalties associated with all aspects of the ACA, including coverage mandates, employer responsibility rules and reporting and disclosure obligations.


The key to a successful client-attorney relationship is meeting and exceeding expectations and providing real value. One way we offer value is through a value-pricing system not based on billable hours, but on an agreement in advance of services rendered. Each agreement is client‑specific to the scope, price, payment terms and timing of services.
Advantages of the Value Pricing Model
Cost Control:
  • Predictable legal costs that can be budgeted
  • Upfront decisions on legal services desired and their price
  • 100% service guarantee as an option
  • Freedom to exit the agreement at any time

Value Drivers:
  • Emphasis on value achieved rather than time spent
  • Regular and structured communication to ensure we are providing the value you seek
  • Customization of services
  • Focus on effectiveness

Aligned Incentives to:
  • Effectively manage the relationship and projects
  • Exceed service expectations
  • Focus on outcomes
  • Understand and further your business goals
  • Create a culture of continuous improvement
  • Invest in a long-term trust relationship

Ease of Administration:
  • No monthly time entries to review
  • Simple, plain English monthly invoice

Case Studies



Dec 2021
December 07, 2021

Webinar: Employer Reporting Requirements for the ACA


Are you ready for yet another year of ACA reporting? Employers with more than 50 full-time equivalent employees will once again be required to issue 1095-C forms and file 1094-C forms with the IRS....

Nov 2021
November 10, 2021

November HR Legal Panel

Prince Conference Center at Calvin University and Online

This program will begin with a presentation on legal developments in HR, including the Biden Administrations agenda with respect to COVID-19 vaccine mandates, employee compensation and benefits, un...

Jul 2021
July 14, 2021

Webinar: Warner Employee Benefits Two-Part Series
Retirement Plan Legal Update


Warner’s Employee Benefits/Executive Compensation Practice Group presented a two-part webinar series, offering insight into specific new laws and developments within employee benefits. As the...


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