Problem: A business wants to be able to attract high-quality employees and consultants through the use of incentive compensation arrangements. The business may also need advice concerning how to make an offer to a prospective employee or consultant or how to structure a severance package for an employee or consultant.
At Cooper Law LLC, we often provide our clients with advice on the negotiation and drafting of employment agreements, engagement letters for personnel and incentive compensation plans.
For corporations, this would include incentive stock options (ISOs), nonqualified stock options, restricted stock and phantom stock. This is generally accomplished through the corporation adopting a long-term incentive plan.
For limited liability companies (LLCs), this would include the structures for providing employees and consultants with contractual rights (“incentive interests”) providing the employee or consultant with a share of the proceeds from capital transactions in certain circumstances and of the profits in other defined circumstances. These provisions may be drafted into the LLC Operating Agreement or attached to the Operating Agreement as an exhibit and may also be reflected in employment agreements or engagement letters.
Cooper Law LLC also advises employers and employees on issues arising in the context of the termination of an employment situation.
Finally, we advise clients concerning situations in which their treatment of individuals as independent contractors could raise the risk that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will recharacterize the relationship as an employer-employee relationship and impose significant penalties and interest on the employer.