Jeffrey Johns is the owner and Principal Attorney The ERISA Law Group.
"I believe it is critically important to understand a client’s objectives in approaching any legal issue. I seek first to understand the client’s needs and then strive to deliver advice in a way that is easily understood and gives the client peace of mind. My primary objective is to craft strategies and solutions that are practical to implement and make the client’s life easier.""
Jeff is an experienced ERISA and benefits attorney with over 20 years of practice at large law firms, as in-house employee benefits counsel for a large publicly-traded employer, and for employers and plan sponsors of all sizes.
Jeff’s primary focus is to assist clients in achieving employee benefit objectives and solving employee benefit problems in a practical and efficient manner. He helps clients maintain their benefit plans and programs in compliance with the numerous, ever-changing, and complex legal requirements related to employee benefits. JJ (as we sometimes call him) compliments his technical expertise with a practical, dedicated, and efficient approach. He draws on his experience as a business owner as a reminder that clients value efficient and effective solutions that work within the context of their existing business processes.
Jeff advises clients on a broad range of employee benefits issues, including issues related to tax-qualified retirement plans (such as 401(k) plans, defined benefit pension plans, and profit sharing plans), 403(b) plans, employee stock ownership plans (“ESOPs”) non-qualified retirement plans for management and key employees, equity and incentive compensation, health and welfare benefits, and cafeteria and flex plans.
Jeff regularly advises clients on fiduciary processes and issues, plan and corporate governance, Internal Revenue Service and Department of Labor correction procedures and audits. He also provides advice to clients regarding employee benefits issues in the context of corporate mergers and acquisitions, as well relating to individual employment agreements and executive compensation.
JJ represents and provides advice to private companies, boards of directors, plan committees, tax-exempt entities, governmental entities, associations, and individuals. He also advises benefits industry professionals and organizations such as financial institutions, third-party administrators, accountants, actuaries and plan consultants.
Born and raised in Kansas City, but left part of his heart in Chicago; married with a son in middle school; loves visiting with family and friends, football (both kinds) and baseball, and listening to all types of music.
Admitted to Bars:
Jeffery Mandell is founder and President of The ERISA Group, P.A. and provides advice and counsel as a non-attorney consultant to The ERISA Law Group.
Since 1982, Jeff concentrated his practice solely on retirement plans, welfare plans, and other ERISA and deferred compensation matters. His experience extends to 401(k), nonqualified deferred compensation, defined benefit and cash balance, profit sharing, health plans and trusts, 457, pension, 403(b), key aspects of employment agreements, cross-tested, cafeteria/flex, ESOP, governmental associations, severance plans, health, VEBA, welfare, and all other types and forms of plans and employee benefits (both subject and not subject to ERISA). He has represented for-profits, individuals, employers, tax-exempts, governmental entities, associations, owners, executives and Board members and more. He also has represented pension professionals and organizations that offer plan services, such as financial institutions, third-party administrators, accountants, attorneys, and plan consultants. Jeff now continues his practice as a consultant in all areas of employee benefits, having resigned from the active practice of law in 2022.
Mr. Mandell was one of a very rigorously selected group of lawyers nationwide to be a Fellow of the American College of Employee Benefits Counsel. Fellowship in The American College of Employee Benefits Counsel is the highest and most prestigious honor an ERISA attorney can receive in the United States. It recognizes both a career of legal excellence and a positive consistent contribution that advances and impacts employee benefits on a national scale. With clients throughout the United States, Mr. Mandell is a recognized practitioner, speaker, and voluminous author on ERISA topics, and had been voted each year by his peers to be listed in the Best Lawyers in America since 1995.
Mr. Mandell’s primary focus is twofold: • he solves employee benefit problems, and • he assists clients in achieving their employee benefit objectives. With an understanding of the parameters of the law, he seeks to find and create opportunities for clients. At the same time, he helps clients to keep their plans in compliance with ERISA’s numerous, ever-changing requirements. Mr. Mandell complements his technical expertise with a practical approach based on nearly 40 years of a practice devoted to ERISA.
With creativity, passion, resourcefulness, and tenacity, his dedication to clients to achieve their objectives perhaps best describes Mr. Mandell’s practice.
Born and raised in Chicago; very lucky Idahoan since 1997; married since 1982 with three daughters. Loves family, friends, music, sports, travel, Idaho, reading, writing, the outdoors, and helping refugee teens.
La Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá
University of Pennsylvania
Jeff was an Adjunct Professor at the University of Idaho College of Law and at the University of Wisconsin Law School. His textbook regarding ERISA plan administrative and legal matters was published in 1998 by Panel Publishers. He was appointed on behalf of the State of Idaho before the Internal Revenue Service and the U.S. Department of Labor in the Pacific Coast TE/GE Council. He previously served on Bloomberg Bureau of National Affairs’ legal advisory board on ERISA/employee benefits.
Admitted to Bars (now retired from practice of law):