STEPHEN P. WILKES
The Wagner Law Group, A Professional Corporation, San Francisco, California, March 2012 Present
- Advise national client base of mutual funds, CIFs, private funds, registered investment advisers, insurance companies, broker dealers, wealth management firms, banks, trust companies, third party platform providers, plan sponsors on ERISA, tax, and related securities law issues.
- ERISA fiduciary and prohibited transaction counseling. Advise third party administration and retirement plan services firms.
- DOL, IRS, SEC audits.
- Advice with respect to retirement plan services agreements, investment management agreements, DOL regulations, SEC regulations, federal legislative activity, qualified employee pension plans, ERISA litigation, Collective Investment Funds, Off-shore investment advisers, Sales and Marketing Distribution Agreements, Wrap-Fee Programs.
- Structure agreements among broker dealer firms and platform provider firms for product distribution.
- Prepare non-discretionary or discretionary advisory agreements, Form ADV Part 2, regulatory disclosures and filings, marketing materials, prospectus, revenue sharing, best investment management practices, CIF advisory and sub-advisory agreements, selling and administrative services agreements, distribution agreements, vendor agreements, compliance manuals and WSP’s.
- Interact with regulatory agencies and Congressional staff on legislative and regulatory issues.
Drinker, Biddle & Reath LLC, San Francisco, California (acquired Reish & Reicher LLP), June 2008 – March 2012
Attorney, Duties similar to above.
Financial Engines, Inc., Palo Alto 2006-2008
- Provide ERISA, tax, investment advisory and general corporate advice across the investment advisory business. Client contracts and negotiations with ERISA providers, Mutual Funds, TPAs and Corporate Sponsors.
- Provide internal compliance training on securities law and ERISA issues.
- Advice with regard to discretionary and non-discretionary advisory relationships, investment guidelines, sub-advisory agreements, RFP’s, and technology sharing arrangements. ERISA fiduciary and prohibited transaction counseling.
- Act as regulatory and legislative liaison for all ERISA and Investment Advisers Act issues. Extensive interaction with the IRS, DOL and SEC, US Congressional staff.
- Monitor regulatory and legislative developments. Draft, implement, and update policies and procedures where applicable. Lead firm’s response and reaction to all federal regulation and legislative proposals regarding ERISA.
Stephen P. Wilkes, San Francisco 2004-2006
Merrill Lynch, San Francisco 2002-2004
ERISA, Securities and retirement/compensation services
The LTV Corporation (NYSE), Cleveland 1997 –2001
Assistant General Counsel
- Worked with CFO to re-negotiate $800 million subordinated note structure with PBGC.
- Chaired Plan Investments Committee.
- Managed Corporate Stock Option Programs, and Board of Director Compensation Plans.
- SEC Proxy Reporting, Member Risk Management Committee.
- Responsible for six (6) different retirement plans covering 15,000 employees/retirees (defined benefit, Taft Hartley, 401(k)).
Merchants Suisse Inc.,New York 1993 – 1997
- Boutique merchant banking business involving strategic ERISA Plan and Public Sector Plan investments for major US and international companies.
Hughes And Luce, Dallas 1991-1993
Partner (Employee Benefits Practice)
- Represented Fortune 500 corporations, Financial Institutions; Registered Investment Advisers.
Winstead, Sechrest & Minick, Dallas 1983-1991
Associate, Partner (Employee Benefits Practice)
- Represented Fortune 500 corporations, Financial Institutions; Registered Investment Advisers.
Gordon Hurwitz, New York 1980 –1983
Associate (Tax Practice)
- Institutional Asset Managers, Broker Dealer, ERISA, and related pension investment matters.
- General tax, corporate and securities matters regarding employee benefits and executive compensation programs of corporate employers.
- Emory University School of Law, Emory University Goizueta Business School, Atlanta, GA
- University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI. RIBA, Political Science, 1976
- CA, NY, MA, and TX
- U.S. Tax Court
- U.S. Court of Claims
- U.S. District Court (S.D.N.Y.)
PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIPS AND COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT
- American Bar Association.
- Planning Committee, Membership Committee, Western Pension Benefit Conference, San Francisco, CA
- Board Member JCC Marin; Board Member San Francisco YMCA.
- Speaking engagements for organizations including Western Pension Benefit Conference; Goldman Sachs; Texas Society of CPA’s; CFA Society of San Francisco; Black Rock; JP Morgan, Harvard Club; LIMRA; Natixis; Loring Ward Financial Services; FINRA Roundtable; SEC Regional Conference; American Bar Association; Yale Club.
- Editor and Contributing Author to “Roadmap to Executive Compensation”, THE BUSINESS LAWYER.
PRESENTATIONS / ARTICLES / QUOTATIONS
- Southern California Compliance Group’s Third Quarter Members Meeting - Stephen Wilkes, speaker, Tuesday, August 29, 2017, 11:30 AM - 1:30 PM, at Pacific Life Insurance Company, 700 Newport Center Dr., 3rd Floor, Newport Beach, CA
- Register here
- 4 Questions to Ask Your Financial Adviser Now - Consumer Reports, June 9, 2017
- DOL Fiduciary Rule – Steve Wilkes, speaker at the NCS Regulatory Compliance Annual Compliance Conference, June 21, 2017 to June 23, 2017, at the Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa, Palm Beach, FL
- DOL Virtual Roundtable - Stephen Wilkes and Livia Aber co-moderate a discussion on the implementation of the Department of Labor’s new fiduciary rule for NSCP (National Society of Compliance Professionals), June 14, 2017, at 1:00 PM (ET)
- To BIC or not to BIC – Steve Wilkes, speaker at the Alternative & Direct Investment Securities Association 2017 Spring Conference, April 3, 2017 to April 5, 2017, at Hyatt Regency New Orleans, LA
- DOL Virtual Roundtable - Steve Wilkes and Livia Aber co-moderate discussion on the implementation of the Department of Labor’s new fiduciary rule for NSCP (National Society of Compliance Professionals), January 18, 2017, February 8, 2017, March 1, 2017 and March 22, 2017, at 1:00 PM (ET)
- Advice on the Bice – Livia Q. Aber and Stephen P. Wilkes, Wolters Kluwer’s Practical Compliance & Risk Management for the Securities Industry, Vol. 10, No. 1, January-February 2017
- DOL Fiduciary Rule Webinar - Steve Wilkes, moderator, Webinar for National Compliance Services ("NCS"), December 7, 2016
- DOL Fiduciary Rule – Steve Wilkes, speaker, National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA), West Coast Annual Meeting (Berkeley, CA), November 13, 2016
- ERISA Lawsuit Implications for Plan Sponsor Fiduciaries and Broker-Dealer Compliance Panel – Steve Wilkes, speaker, 2016 National Planning Holdings, Inc. Annual Retirement Symposium, at the Omni Austin Hotel Southpark (Austin, TX), November 2, 2016
- DOL Fiduciary Rule - with an emphasis on the rule’s effect on private fund ERISA fiduciaries - ACA Compliance Group’s Fall 2016 Compliance Conference at the Ritz-Carlton in Marina Del Ray, CA, October 27, 2016
- DOL Fiduciary Rule 101, Fundamental Overview - 2016 National Society of Compliance Professionals (NSCP) National Conference (Washington, DC), October 17-19, 2016
- Retirement industry providers are preparing careful responses to the fiduciary rule - PlanAdviser, September/October 2016
- Understanding DOL Rule Impacts on the Financial Planning Process – Webinar for North Highland Worldwide Consulting, September 14, 2016.
- Wagner Law Group Expands its ERISA Team - 401kWire, July 21, 2016
- Workflows: Law Firm News for July 15, 2016 - Bloomberg BNA, July 18, 2016
- Retirement Industry People Moves - PlanSponsor, July 8, 2016
- Wagner Law Group Adds Stephen P. Wilkes as Partner - CityBizList, July 5, 2016
- Premier ERISA Law Firm Reinforces its Title I Fiduciary Law Practice With the Appointment of Stephen P. Wilkes as Partner - Yahoo! Finance, July 5, 2016
- Premier ERISA Law Firm Reinforces its Title I Fiduciary Law Practice With the Appointment of Stephen P. Wilkes as Partner - Financial Content, July 5, 2016
- Premier ERISA Law Firm Reinforces its Title I Fiduciary Law Practice With the Appointment of Stephen P. Wilkes as Partner - BenefitsLink, July 5, 2016
- Premier ERISA Law Firm Reinforces its Title I Fiduciary Law Practice With the Appointment of Stephen P. Wilkes as Partner - Veooz, July 5, 2016
- Premier ERISA Law Firm Reinforces its Title I Fiduciary Law Practice With the Appointment of Stephen P. Wilkes as Partner - 4-traders.com, July 5, 2016
- Premier ERISA Law Firm Reinforces its Title I Fiduciary Law Practice With the Appointment of Stephen P. Wilkes as Partner - StockGuru, July 5, 2016
- The Wagner Law Group Appoints Stephen P. Wilkes as Partner - July 5, 2016
- Fiduciary Regulation - Two Presentations for Jackson National Life, June 13, 2016 (Denver, Colorado) and June 16, 2016 (Atlanta, GA)
- Fiduciary Regulation - Presentations for the Retirement Management Executive Forum (Chicago, Illinois), June 8–9, 2016
- Review of the new fiduciary rule for retirement advisers - Stephen Wilkes, Presentation for The Financial Women of San Francisco and the Financial Planners Association of San Francisco, June 7, 2016
- Panel on the new DOL Fiduciary Regulation - Presentation for Pensions & Investments and Investment News, April 28, 2016
- Webinar on the new DOL Fiduciary Regulation - National Society of Compliance Professionals (NSCP) and LIMRA, April 28, 2016
- Fiduciary Regulation - LPL Retirement Partners Symposium (New Orleans, LA), April 26, 2016
- Final Look at DOL Fiduciary Proposal - A Game Changer - Webinar for National Society of Compliance Professionals, March 10, 2016
- Securities Law Primer for ERISA Professionals - Webinar for American Law Institute, February 18, 2016
- Presentation at Northern California Chapter of International Society of Employee Benefit Specialists (ISEB) - December 8, 2015
- ERISA Cyber Security – The Next Frontier - ERISA Webinar (35 minutes), November 18, 2015
- What You Need to Know About Investment Advisory Agreements - ERISA & Investment Management Law Webinar, October 1, 2015
- Retirement Plan Controlled Group and Affiliated Service Organization Rules - ERISA Webinar (Approximately 30 minutes), August 26, 2015
- Gaps remain in perception of cyber threats - Pensions & Investments, August 24, 2015
- Overview of Retirement Plan Qualification Rules - ERISA Webinar (30 minutes), August 4, 2015
- NAIC to Examine DOL’s Proposed IRA Annuity Rules - InsuranceNewsNet, July 8, 2015
- Senate, House OK Bills to Defund Fiduciary Push - InsuranceNewsNet, June 24, 2015
- DOL Proposal On ERISA Fiduciary Status For Investment Advisers - ERISA & Investment Management Law Webinar for National
Compliance Services ("NCS") (50 min), June 18, 2015
- Cybersecurity Policy and Procedure: Legal Considerations for Written Policy Statement - ERISA & Investment Management Law Webinar (30 min), April 16, 2015
- Hedge Fund Due Diligence: ERISA and Other Legal Concerns - ERISA & Investment Management Law Webinar (30 min), March 26, 2015
- Your Independent Contractors Are Not Who You Think They Are: Employee Status Matters - Employment Law Webinar, March 5, 2015
- 2015 Regulatory Kickoff for Investment Advisers and Broker Dealers - Investment Management Law Webinar (30 min.), February 19, 2015
- Performance Advertising Issues for Investment Advisers - Investment Management Law Webinar, January 22, 2015
- ERISA Whistle Blowers - Pension Risk Matters, November 18, 2014
- A Full View of CIF: Securities Law, Banking & ERISA - ERISA Webinar, November 12, 2014
- More on SEC and FINRA Developments - ERISA Webinar, October 16, 2014
- Trending Topics for Registered Investment Advisors - ERISA Webinar, September 10, 2014
- Hot Topics for Advisors and Plan Sponsors - ERISA Webinar, July 23, 2014
- View Stephen Wilkes' PowerPoint presentation (in .pdf format) here
- Using Insurance Inside of Deferred Compensation Agreements - ERISA Webinar, June 19, 2014
- Service Agreements with Plans: An In-Depth Analysis - ERISA Webinar, May 15, 2014
- Advantages and Traps with Bonus Compensation for Non-Profit - Executive Compensation Agreements - ERISA Webinar, April 10, 2014
- Section 457(f): Planning for Your Non-Profit Clients - ERISA Webinar, March 20, 2014
- Use of Social Media: Should We Worry about ERISA? - ERISA Webinar, February 6, 2014
- Should You have a Formal ERISA Compliance Policy? - ERISA Webinar, December 12, 2013