Raymond M. Malone

Partner

Cleveland
T +1 216.861.7879  |  F +1 216.696.0740

"[Ray Malone] has a practical approach and an ability to express things in ways clients can understand."

— Chambers USA 2014

Ray Malone has more than 30 years' experience in the employee benefits and executive compensation areas. He assists public and private companies with executive compensation arrangements and ERISA-related issues, including disclosure and transactional support. Ray has handled matters covering most aspects of the design, implementation, maintenance, operation, amendment, and termination of the many types of qualified and nonqualified retirement plans and programs, tax-deferred annuity plans, 457 plans, and funded and unfunded welfare and fringe benefit plans. Ray also has represented employers, lenders, and fiduciaries in numerous matters relating to Employee Stock Ownership Plans.

The types of employers with which Ray has worked include corporations (ranging in size from mid-market corporations to Fortune 100 corporations to large privately held corporations), partnerships, limited liability companies, venture capital funds, REITs, and tax-exempt employers, such as hospitals, universities, local school systems, governmental entities, and church-affiliated institutions.

Select Experience

  • For many employers, or for Compensation Committees, provides advice in the design, implementation, maintenance, operation, and termination of nonqualified deferred compensation programs and other executive incentive compensation programs for both taxable and tax-exempt employers, and in counseling employers to either comply with the new Code Section 409A rules, or design to avoid their application. These include funded, unfunded, stock-based, stock option, unit stock-based programs, and other types of equity and cash incentive plans.
  • Regularly negotiates employment and separation agreements for these entities for their most senior or highest level executives.
  • Has represented and counseled numerous employers in administrative, litigated, and other contested matters involving employee benefit plans. These include matters before the Internal Revenue Service, U.S. Department of Labor, the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, and among employers, fiduciaries, plan sponsors, and private plaintiffs—such as plan participants or their beneficiaries.
  • Provides counsel and advice in assisting businesses design employment and worker equity incentive programs for start-up and emerging companies while balancing the needs and expectations of investors and owners. This discipline involves navigating the overlapping areas of employment law, employee benefits, taxation of deferred compensation, corporate governance, and related securities matters.
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Experience

  • For many employers, or for Compensation Committees, provides advice in the design, implementation, maintenance, operation, and termination of nonqualified deferred compensation programs and other executive incentive compensation programs for both taxable and tax-exempt employers, and in counseling employers to either comply with the new Code Section 409A rules, or design to avoid their application. These include funded, unfunded, stock-based, stock option, unit stock-based programs, and other types of equity and cash incentive plans.
  • Regularly negotiates employment and separation agreements for these entities for their most senior or highest level executives.
  • Has represented and counseled numerous employers in administrative, litigated, and other contested matters involving employee benefit plans. These include matters before the Internal Revenue Service, U.S. Department of Labor, the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, and among employers, fiduciaries, plan sponsors, and private plaintiffs—such as plan participants or their beneficiaries.
  • Provides counsel and advice in assisting businesses design employment and worker equity incentive programs for start-up and emerging companies while balancing the needs and expectations of investors and owners. This discipline involves navigating the overlapping areas of employment law, employee benefits, taxation of deferred compensation, corporate governance, and related securities matters.
  • Has counseled issuers of securities, lenders, borrowers, purchasers, and sellers with regard to employee benefit issues that affect the issuance of securities, the extension of credit, and the acquisition or disposition of assets or of the stock of subsidiary, affiliated, or unrelated organizations. Ray has provided advice and strategy in designing, structuring and documenting private equity, venture capital, and REIT transactions involving investment by ERISA plans and other benefit plan investors.
  • Has handled employment law matters that relate to or directly affect employee benefit plans but that arise under general employment law. These matters include certain issues, problems, or projects under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Older Worker Benefit Protection Act (for example, with respect to the design of early retirement programs), the Family and Medical Leave Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the National Labor Relations Act. Ray has extensive experience in designing and implementing workforce reduction plans and programs and also counsels employers and high level executives in negotiating employment agreements and separation agreements.
  • Has extensive experience in counseling Taft-Hartley retirement and welfare funds of all sizes, and has represented such funds before the Internal Revenue Service, U.S. Department of Labor, and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, and matters between the funds and their participants or beneficiaries.
  • With respect to many Taft-Hartley funds, has represented employers, employer-appointed trustees, and their interests with respect to such funds. He has extensive experience in withdrawal liability matters involving multiemployer pension plans and has represented and counseled employers in withdrawing from such plans and in arbitrating over withdrawal liability.
  • Has counseled both providers and purchasers of healthcare in complying with requirements under healthcare laws such as COBRA, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, Medicare Part D and numerous other laws involving the design, implementation, delivery and sale of healthcare services.
  • Served as general counsel for a large manufacturer of prefabricated housing and commercial buildings. In this capacity, Ray handled a great variety of employment, financial, commercial, tax, and bankruptcy matters for this client and its former holding company and subsidiaries.

Recognitions

  • Chambers USA: Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation in Ohio (2006 to 2016)
  • The Legal 500 United States (2016)
    • Recommended in Labor and Employment: Employee benefits and executive compensation
  • The Best Lawyers in America© (2001 to 2017)
    • Cleveland: Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law
  • Martindale-Hubbell: AV Preeminent
  • Ohio "Super Lawyer" (2004 to 2006, 2008 to 2014)

Memberships

  • Certified Public Accountant in the State of Ohio (1982, non-practicing)

Services

Industries

Emerging Issues

Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit
  • U.S. Tax Court
  • U.S. District Court, District of Colorado
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio
  • Colorado, 1986
  • Ohio, 1982

Education

  • J.D., Case Western Reserve University School of Law, 1982, Order of the Coif
  • B.S., Miami University, 1979, cum laude