Dodi Walker Gross

Partner

Education

  • Duquesne University School of Law, 1982, J.D.
  • Institute for Paralegal Training, Philadelphia, 1975, Concentration in Employee Benefits
  • Michigan State University, 1975, B.S., Multidisciplinary Social Science

Professional Admissions / Qualifications

  • Pennsylvania

Court Admissions

  • State Supreme Court - Pennsylvania
  • U.S. District Court - Western District of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. Tax Court

Dodi is an employee benefits lawyer and more than a 20 year partner with Reed Smith. In this capacity, she represents local, national, and multinational corporations. Her work encompasses the full range of employee benefits matters with respect to executive compensation, separation pay, retirement, savings, welfare and cafeteria plans.

Dodi's more than 35 years of experience began shortly after the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 ("ERISA") was passed in September 1974. In addition to ERISA, her areas of concentration include US and international plan design; IRS, DOL, and PBGC compliance; benefit claims and other dispute resolution; benefits issues in corporate and employment transactions; labor negotiations; reductions in force; QDROs; executive employment contracts and separation agreements; retiree medical programs; and specialized benefit trusts. Welfare plan experience includes cafeteria plans, COBRA, HIPAA, and domestic partner issues.

She also has extensive experience representing plan sponsors and administrators in navigating IRS, DOL, and PBGC audits and correction programs.

Dodi regularly speaks on a number of employee benefits topics, including for the Pennsylvania Bar Institute, and co-authors many Reed Smith client alerts, which can be found at www.reedsmith.com.

Employment History

  • 1984 - Reed Smith
    • Partner (1990); Employee Benefits Paralegal (1975-1977)
  • 1983 - Thorp Reed & Armstrong
    • Employee Benefits Attorney
  • 1977 - Allegheny International, Inc.
    • Employee Benefits supervisor and manager in the Human Resources Department while working towards a law degree in the evenings
  • Robert Morris University
    • Former instructor of employee benefits course, paralegal program

Honors & Awards

  • Recipient of Lexology Client Choice Award (2014)
  • Listed in Pennsylvania Super Lawyers (2014)
  • Included in The Best Lawyers in America (2012-2015)
  • Fellow of the Allegheny County Bar Foundation (2011)
  • Fellow of the American College of Employee Benefits Counsel (2008)
  • Appointed by the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury to serve on the Advisory Committee on Tax-Exempt and Government Entities Division of the IRS (ACT) (term June 2006 to June 2009)
  • Pennsylvania Law Weekly named Dodi as one of the 56 leading women lawyers (and one of four ERISA lawyers) in Pennsylvania (2004)

Professional Affiliations

  • American College of Employee Benefits Counsel – Fellow
  • American Bar Association
  • Allegheny County Bar Association
  • Allegheny County Bar Foundation – Fellow
  • Duquesne Law Alumni Association Board of Governors – Governor
  • Jewish Women's Foundation of Greater Pittsburgh – Founding Trustee

Notable Quotes

  • "DOL Argues Against Requiring Procedure For Disclaimers to Invoke Kennedy Rule," Pension & Benefits Reporter (BNA), 37 BPR 2191 (5 October 2010) (available at: news.bna.com/pbln/display/issue_display.adp?date=20101005)
  • "ACT Report Recommends IRS Change Plan Rules for Adopting Interim Amendments," Pension & Benefits Daily (BNA) (10 June 2010) (available at: news.bna.com/pdln/display/batch_print_display.adp?date=20100610)
  • "Court Nixes Continental's Attempt to Recoup Benefits Paid to Pilots With 'Sham' Divorces," Pension & Benefits Daily (BNA) (21 October 2009) (available at: news.bna.com/pdln/display/batch_print_display.adp?date=20091021)
  • "Global Issues Receiving Increasing Attention By IRS, Benefit Practitioners, Speakers Say," Pension & Benefits Daily (BNA) (29 September 2009) (available at: news.bna.com/pdln/display/batch_print_display.adp?date=20090929)
  • "IRS Delays International Account Reporting; Benefit Plans Want More Guidance," Pension & Benefits Daily (BNA) (10 August 2009) (available at: news.bna.com/pdln/display/batch_print_display.adp?date=20090810)
  • "Attorneys Respond to FTC Interpretation, Want Formal Guidance on Red Flags Rule," Pension & Benefits Daily (BNA) (20 July 2009) (available at: news.bna.com/pdln/display/batch_print_display.adp?date=20090720) 
  • "International Employee Plans Issues Present Cross-Jurisdictional Challenges, ACT Reports," Pension & Benefits Reporter (BNA), 36 BPR 1402 (16 June 2009) (available at: news.bna.com/pbln/display/issue_display.adp?date=20090616&lf=rss)
  • "Pension-Disclosure Trap Looms – Are some CFOs late in recognizing the demands of meeting an April 30 compliance deadline?" CFO.com (22 April 2009) (available at: cfo.com/article.cfm/13525928)
  • "Reactions to Kennedy v. Plan Adm’r for DuPont Sav. & Inv. Plan," 129 S. Ct. 865; 172 L. Ed. 2d 662; 2009 U.S. LEXIS 869; 45 Employee Benefits Cas. (BNA) 2249 (26 January 2009)," ABA Empl. Ben. Com. Newsletter (Spring 2009) (available at: abanet.org/labor/ebcomm/newsletter/09/spring/Kennedy-Plan.shtml)
  • "High Court’s DuPont Ruling Clarifies Pension Law," Law360, Portfolio Media, New York (26 January 2009) (available at:  law360.com/articles/84611)
  • "ERISA vs. Family Law at the Court Part III—Kennedy v. Plan Administrator for DuPont Savings & Investment Plan (argued 7 October 2008)," ABA Empl. Ben. Com. Newsletter (November 2008) (available at: abanet.org/labor/ebcomm/newsletter/08/nov/nov-ERISA.shtml)  
  • "Supreme Court Shifts Focus of QDRO Case To 'Plan Documents' Rule for Designations," Daily Lab. Rep. (BNA), No. 195 (8 October 2008) (available at: pubs.bna.com/ip/bna/dlr.nsf/is/A0B7E7Q2P8) 
  • "Justices Grapple With Scope of ERISA Case," Law360, Portfolio Media, New York (7 October 2008) (available at: law360.com/print_article/71802)