Amy Pocino Kelly is the deputy practice leader for the employee benefits and executive compensation practice. Amy’s practice focuses on providing solution-oriented and strategic day-to-day guidance on employee benefits plan matters to plan sponsors, including public and private companies, tax-exempt organizations, and governmental employers. She counsels clients on the design, governance, operation, and compliance of qualified and nonqualified retirement plans, equity and executive compensation arrangements, and welfare benefit plans. Amy also represents plan sponsors in audit and correction matters before the US Department of Labor (DOL) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
Amy handles a broad caseload that includes retirement plans, executive compensation arrangements and employee benefit plans.
Amy is an all-around wonderful relationship manager who will respond very quickly to our inquiries.
A spectacular lawyer who works very hard and is incredibly committed to her clients.
Amy provides critical benefits and executive compensation counseling to assist clients in integrating, changing, or terminating benefits plans. During and after mergers and acquisitions, she oversees due diligence reviews of benefit plans and handles executive compensation for key management. She also supervises the design and implementation of retention agreements and analysis of the application of Sections 280G and 409A of the Internal Revenue Code. Collaborating with management, in-house counsel, consultants, and board compensation committees, she helps develop equity compensation and executive plans and agreements. She also represents senior management teams in merger and acquisition transactions, including leveraged buyouts.
In addition, Amy counsels clients on plan governance and fiduciary obligations, including investment issues and prohibited transactions. To keep clients in compliance with US federal rules, she helps them identify and correct administration or document failures in accordance with the IRS Employee Plan Compliance Resolution System. She also guides them in analyzing and fixing fiduciary failures under the DOL’s voluntary correction program.
Often when other firms represent their clients in transactions, they call in Amy as a consultant on the employee benefits, employment, and labor issues that arise in those deals.
Amy regularly speaks on employee benefits topics at external and co-hosted events and presentations, and in Morgan Lewis–hosted webinars, roundtables, and events. To help organizations committed to education, human rights, the arts, athletics, and low income and homeless people, Amy provides pro bono employee benefits advice and counseling. She also serves as vice chair of the board for Women Against Abuse.
Boston University, 1996, B.A.
Rutgers University School of Law, 1999, J.D.
District of Columbia
Awards and Affiliations
Member, Practice Group of the Year, Benefits, Law360 (2022)
Recognized, Leading US Corporate Employment Lawyer, Lawdragon 500 (2022)
Recommended, Labor and employment: Employee benefits, executive compensation and retirement plans: design, The Legal 500 US (2022, 2023)
Recommended, Labor and employment: Employee benefits, executive compensation and retirement plans: transactional, The Legal 500 US (2016–2021, 2023)
Band 1, Employee Benefits & Compensation, Pennsylvania, Chambers USA (2022, 2023)