Laura Westfall

Partner, King & Spalding

Laura Westfall advises clients on executive compensation and employee benefit plans and arrangements, including their design, taxation, regulatory compliance and treatment in mergers & acquisitions, financings, and other corporate transactions. Laura also counsels fund sponsors, investing plans and lenders on the fiduciary, prohibited transaction and other implications of ERISA.

In addition, Laura advises clients with respect to the design and operation of equity compensation arrangements, including all forms of stock compensation (such as stock option, restricted stock and phantom stock plans), partnership equity plans and long-term incentive plans, and the implications of Sections 162(m), 280G and 409A of the Internal Revenue Code on such arrangements. Laura regularly represents both employers and senior executives in connection with the negotiation and drafting of executive compensation agreements, including employment, change-in-control, retention and severance agreements. Laura also provides advice to clients on all aspects of their employee benefit programs, including the design and implementation of tax qualified retirement plans (such as 401(k) plans, defined benefit plans and ESOPs), health, welfare and other fringe benefit plans (including medical, dental, disability, life insurance, cafeteria and consumer-directed health plans), as well as compliance with ERISA, the Internal Revenue Code, COBRA, HIPAA and the Affordable Care Act.

Laura received her B.A. in International Relations from Mount Holyoke College in May 2003, and her J.D. from Widener University School of Law in May 2006. Laura earned her LL.M. in Taxation, with distinction, as well as an Employee Benefits Law Certificate, from Georgetown University Law Center in May 2007. Laura is also a mountaineering enthusiast, and has summited two of the famed “Seven Summits,” Kilimanjaro (19,341’) and Aconcagua (22,901’) and participated in expeditions on Rainier (14,411’) and Elbrus (18,510’).

Professional Associations

  • Co-Chair, M&A Subcommittee, Employee Benefits Committee, ABA Section of Taxation (2014-2018; Associate Vice Chair, 2012-2014)
  • Co-Chair, New Employee Benefits Attorneys Forum, Employee Benefits Committee, ABA Section of Taxation (2013-2018)
  • Chair, DOMA Task Force, Diversity Committee, ABA Section of Taxation (2012-2014)