Taylor Wedge French


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  • Vanderbilt University Law School, JD, 2005
  • Dartmouth College, AB, Government and History, 2002
  • New York
  • North Carolina

Taylor is co-chair of the firm’s employee benefits and executive compensation group. His employee benefits practice covers a wide-range of traditional executive compensation and employee benefits matters along with a variety of inter-disciplinary practice areas and industries that are affected by executive compensation and employee benefits laws.

Executive Compensation

Taylor regularly works with clients to design, implement and maintain equity compensation plans, long-term incentive plans, bonus programs and non-qualified deferred compensation arrangements for executives, employees and non-employee directors. He also advises and represents executives, boards of directors and compensation committees in the negotiation and drafting of employment, severance, retirement, termination and change in control agreements. Taylor also has extensive experience advising clients on the impact of Code Section 409A on executive compensation arrangements and has assisted clients utilize IRS programs to correct plan deficiencies or operation errors.

In connection with his executive compensation practice, Taylor frequently counsels compensation committees of publicly-traded clients on the Dodd-Frank financial reform laws and regularly assists with the drafting and preparation of proxy statements and other SEC filings related to executive compensation matters.

Tax-Qualified Retirement Plans

Taylor has extensive experience in the creation and maintenance of all manner of tax-qualified retirement plans, such as, defined benefit pension plans, 401(k) plans, profit-sharing plans, employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs), employee stock purchase plans (ESPPs) and money purchase pension plans. He also regularly counsels clients in the submission of tax-qualified retirement plans to IRS for favorable determination letters and assists clients preparing participant communications and government filings, as well as, correcting plan document and operation errors under the Self-Correction Procedure (SCP) and Voluntary Compliance Program (VCP) under the IRS’s EPCRS program.

Health and Welfare Benefits

Taylor frequently works with clients to ensure compliance with HIPAA and HITECH and provides counsel concerning issues relating to PPACA and other healthcare reform laws. In addition, he assists many clients in creating WRAP plan documents and in the design, implementation and operation of employee wellness programs.

Corporate Transactions and Finance

Taylor frequently advises and negotiates executive compensation and employee benefits matters relating to private equity, mergers and acquisitions, and other corporate transactions. Such representations have included stock transactions, asset acquisitions, and stock and asset purchases for clients in the pharmaceutical, financial services and industrial sectors. In addition, Taylor has extensive experience drafting and negotiating employee benefits matters related to corporate finance transactions.

Taylor also advises hedge funds and other pooled investment entities in connection with investments from pension plans and other sources of plan assets and assists fund managers with the application of exceptions from ERISA’s plan asset rules under the 25% test, VCOC and REOC exceptions.

Nonprofit and Tax-Exempt Organizations

Taylor works with a variety of nonprofit and tax-exempt organizations on the design, implementation and administration specialized employee benefit plans, such as: 403(b) plans, 457(b) and 457(f) deferred compensation plans.

In the News

Taylor Wedge French
T: +1 704 373 8037F: +1 704 373 8838201 North Tryon Street
Suite 3000
Charlotte, NC 28202-2146

Representation of publicly-traded and privately-held companies and family investment offices in the design and implementation of executive incentive compensation arrangements, including short-term bonus plans, long-term equity incentives, change of control severance agreements.

Assisted beverage distribution, technology-staffing and healthcare marketing companies create new nonqualified deferred compensation plans and utilize IRS programs to correct Code Section 409A deficiencies.

Representation of a tax-exempt healthcare employer in connection with defined benefit pension, 401(k), 403(b), 457(b) and 457(f) retirement plans.

Representation of multiple private equity funds in the creation of compensation programs for executives at portfolio companies and employees of the funds.

Representation of healthcare service provider with respect to HIPAA and HITECH compliance.

Selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America, Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law, Woodward/White, Inc., 2018

Co-author, "The New Tax Reforms: A Board Briefing," The Corporate Board, Vol. XXXIV, No. 229, March/April 2018
Co-author, "Sun Capital Decision Threatens Lenders with Controlled Group Liability," The Banking Law Journal, June 2014
Speaker, "Tax Reform and the Impact on Tax-Exempt Organizations," Essential Insight on Sweeping Tax Reforms, February 1, 2018
Speaker, "Tax Reform and the Impact on Employee Benefits," Essential Insight on Sweeping Tax Reforms, January 25, 2018
Speaker, ERISA 403(b) Plan Litigation; New Frontier in Retirement Fund Litigation, Strafford Live CLE Webinars, September 26, 2017
Speaker, Employee Benefits in the Age of Trump, September 21, 2017
Speaker, "Advising the Corporate Executive: Planning Opportunities with Stock Options and Other Forms of Incentive Compensation," New Developments in Tax and Wealth Planning Seminar, April 25, 2017
Speaker, "Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Matters in Corporate Transitions—ESOPs, Equity Incentives and Other Considerations," The Right Way to Exit: Key Tax and Estate Planning Issues in Selling a Business, North Carolina Bar Association, Estate Planning & Fiduciary Law and Tax Sections, November 17, 2016
Speaker, "The New Round of 401(k) and 403(b) Plan Litigation," Hot Topics in Employee Benefits, McGuireWoods Webinar, November 10, 2016
Speaker, "Private equity funds responsible for multiemployer plan withdrawal liability of portfolio company," SEC Compliance and Disclosure Update, McGuireWoods LLP SEC Practice Complimentary Webinar Series, May 24, 2016
Speaker, "Updating Proxy Disclosures for 2016" and "Proxy Advisory Firm Updates," Hot Topics for the 2016 Proxy/Annual Reporting Season, McGuireWoods LLP SEC Practice Complimentary Webinar Series, November 17, 2015
Speaker, "CEO Pay Ratio Disclosure Rule," SEC Compliance and Disclosure Update, McGuireWoods LLP SEC Practice Complimentary Webinar Series, September 22, 2015
Speaker, "Disclosure of Hedging by Employees," SEC Compliance and Disclosure Update, McGuireWoods LLP SEC Practice Complimentary Webinar Series, April 28, 2015
SEC Issues Pay Ratio Guidance, September 27, 2017
SEC Finalizes Say-on-Pay Rules, January 31, 2011