Robert M. Cipolla

Senior Counsel

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Practices
Industries
Education
  • Cleveland State University, Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, JD, 1994
  • Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, BS, 1988
Admissions
  • Ohio
  • Virginia
Affiliations

Member, Central Virginia Employee Benefits Counsel

Former Adjunct Faculty Member, Southeastern Trust School

Rob is the leader in the firm’s Richmond office of the employee benefit and executive compensation group. He assists a wide variety of clients including public, private, tax-exempt and governmental entities on qualified retirement plans, health and welfare plans, executive compensation and other related benefit matters.

Rob’s practice is focused primarily on finding practical business solutions for client needs, problems and issues that arise within the technical regulatory framework of employee benefit law under ERISA and the Internal Revenue Code. Rob has substantial experience in advising clients regarding the design, administration, operation, reporting and disclosure of defined benefit plans, 401(k) retirement plans, 403(b) and 457 plans, employment agreements, non-qualified deferred compensation, multi-employer plans and health plans. He helps employers obtain rulings from the IRS, DOL and other governmental agencies, and also assists clients in obtaining favorable outcomes on audits by such agencies. Rob also regularly provides advice on the employee benefit aspects of mergers and acquisitions and helps clients assimilate those plans and workforces following such transactions.

Rob regularly speaks at employee benefit programs, presentations and conferences. He is a member of the Central Virginia Employee Benefit Counsel, the American Bar Association and has taught classes at the Southeastern Trust School. Rob has served on the firm’s Recruiting Committee and Associate Committee, and is currently on the firm’s Pension Committee and acts as assistant chair. Rob earned his law degree from the Cleveland Marshall College of law at night while working for a large national accounting firm.

"I think what sets us apart from other employee benefit practices throughout the country is not only exceptional lawyers, but our team approach to clients. We can react quickly, efficiently and effectively with right group of lawyers to virtually any employee benefit plan problem or issue a client may have."
Robert M Cipolla
vCard
T: +1 804 775 4713F: +1 804 698 2109Gateway Plaza
800 East Canal Street
Richmond, VA 23219-3916
RESULTS DEPEND ON A VARIETY OF FACTORS UNIQUE TO EACH CASE. PRIOR RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE OR PREDICT A SIMILAR OUTCOME.

Obtain a private letter ruling from the IRS that saved a plan sponsor $20 million in additional pension costs.

Representation of a public company in the spin-off of a new public company and assist the companies in the establishment of all employee benefit plans for the new public company, including defined benefit plans, defined contribution plans, executive compensation plans and welfare benefit plans.

Advice on the design and restructuring of several defined benefit pension plans and defined contribution plans for a Fortune 500 company.

Representation of several university general counsels and boards of trustees in the design and negotiation of employment agreements and deferred compensation plans for executive officers and athletic coaches.

Representation of a multinational corporation in a merger and identified $2 million in savings from potential costs associated with non-compliant non-qualified deferred compensation plans.

Selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America, Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law, Woodward/White, Inc., 2009-2017

Co-author, "Sun Capital Decision Threatens Lenders with Controlled Group Liability," The Banking Law Journal, June 2014
Speaker, "The New Round of 401(k) and 403(b) Plan Litigation," Hot Topics in Employee Benefits, McGuireWoods Webinar, November 10, 2016
Speaker, "Hot Topics in Employee Benefits and Payroll," 13th Annual Nonprofit Seminar – Staying Current and Avoiding Trouble: What Nonprofits Need to Know, September 15 & 30, 2015
Co-Speaker, "Best Practices for Board and Staff Orientation," 12th Annual Nonprofit Seminar - Charities: More Change on the Horizon?, September 30, October 9, 2014
Co-speaker, "Effective Management of Staff," 11th Annual Nonprofit Seminar: Best Practices in Nonprofit Management, October 15 & 29, 2013
Speaker, "403(b) Plans – Compliance and Enforcement," 10th Annual Nonprofit Seminar: Regulatory and Legal Challenges Facing Nonprofits, September 25, October 9 & 16, 2012