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Practice Teams

Contact Julia

3400 U.S. Bancorp Tower
111 S.W. Fifth Avenue
Portland, OR 97204
T: 503.205.2389

Julia A. DeWitt

Partner

Julia A. DeWitt began practicing law in 1994 at Pillsbury, Madison & Sutro LLP in San Francisco. She joined Miller Nash Graham & Dunn in 1996. Julia focuses her practice on employee benefits law, specializing in qualified plans and health and welfare plans.

Julia drafts individually designed plan documents, SPDs, and participant notices for all types of deferred compensation and health and welfare plans. She advises plan sponsors with respect to qualification requirements under Code Sections 401(a), 403(b), and 457(b), ERISA compliance, plan design issues, plan administration, nondiscrimination testing, and fiduciary duties. She assists plan sponsors in connection with IRS and DOL audits of their plans. She also helps plan sponsors with the correction of qualification failures in their qualified plans under EPCRS (through either self-correction or VCP filings) and with the correction of fiduciary breaches. Julia assists plan sponsors with the federal laws that apply to their cafeteria and group health plans, including health care reform, COBRA, HIPAA, USERRA, and nondiscrimination rules.

Representative Experience

Julia prepares individually-designed plan documents and SPDs for all types of deferred compensation and health and welfare plans. She helps employers design their plans to fulfill the employers' objectives. She prepares profit sharing plans, 401(k) plans, money purchase pension plans, traditional defined benefit plans, cash balance plans, 403(b) plans, 457(b) plans, nonqualified plans, cafeteria plans, health flexible spending arrangements, DCAPs, HSAs, severance plans, EAPs, educational assistance plans, trust agreements, medical reimbursement plans, and wrap-around plans. She prepares defined contribution plans with varying features, including safe-harbor 401(k) plans, automatic enrollment, and Roth contributions. She prepares plans with all types of employer contribution formulas, including integration with Social Security, new comparability, and age- and service-weighted formulas. She monitors law changes and keeps the plan documents up-to-date. She prepares all types of notices to participants, including 204(h) notices, QDIA notices, safe-harbor notices, automatic enrollment notices, benefit forms, COBRA notices, certificates of creditable coverage, and privacy notices.
Julia assists plan sponsors to ensure that their plans remain qualified under Code Sections 401(a), 403(b), or 457(b). She advises with respect to all qualification requirements, including issues involving eligibility, vesting, contributions, benefit accruals, limits on contributions and benefits, distributions, participant loans, design-based safe harbors, and nondiscrimination testing. She helps plan sponsors comply with ERISA, including advising plan fiduciaries regarding their fiduciary duties under ERISA, assisting plan administrators with ERISA's reporting and disclosure requirements, advising regarding the prohibited transaction rules, and ensuring fiduciary protection for participant-directed investments.
Julia has assisted several plan sponsors in connection with IRS and DOL audits of their plans. These audits involved issues of improper plan loans to participants, incorrect valuation of plan assets, breaches of fiduciary duty, and qualification defects. Julia prepares clients for the audit and assists with resolving any identified issues. As a result of her representation, plan sponsors have been able to avoid plan disqualification and civil penalties under ERISA.
Julia has helped plan sponsors with the correction of qualification failures in their qualified plans under EPCRS, through either self correction or VCP filings. These failures included incorrect or untimely contributions, improper distributions, participation errors, testing failures, vesting failures, improper participant loans, and failures to amend. These corrections enabled the plans to maintain their qualified status.
Julia has assisted plan sponsors to correct various fiduciary breaches, including the failure to timely deposit elective deferrals, failure to hold plan assets in trust, exclusive benefit violations, prohibited transactions, and failure to properly value plan assets.