Institutional Investor Services
Reinhart’s Institutional Investor Services team provides counsel on Corporate Governance, investment contracts, fiduciary and pension plans and independent securities litigation review to pension funds, union funds, endowments, insurance companies and other institutional investors. Our team has decades of combined experience counseling clients on these complex matters, and we are uniquely suited to skillfully navigate today’s rapidly changing institutional investor and corporate governance landscape.
Our attorneys bring a unique body of experience in developing, evaluating and implementing corporate governance policy and strategy with companies, boards, investors, regulators and lawmakers. Their insights give our clients a truly informed and holistic perspective on the issues facing institutional investors today. We additionally have years of experience counseling private market fund investors and representing institutional investors in billions of dollars of investment transactions each year.
We count among our counsel the Dean Emeritus of the University of Wisconsin Law School, who is a respected national authority on corporate law. He has served as a consultant to boards, management and investors on issues of corporate governance. Another of our attorneys is the former general counsel of the State of Wisconsin Investment Board, and has an established international reputation as a thought leader on the role of investors in corporate governance.
Leveraging a multidisciplinary approach that capitalizes on the strength and size of our Corporate Law, Employee Benefits, International, Litigation, Real Estate, Business Reorganization and Securities practices, we are uniquely qualified to provide comprehensive legal solutions for all investment transactions.
Reinhart provides a broad range of investment legal services to institutional investors. Our attorneys represent institutional investors in the negotiation of custody contracts, securities lending agreements, alternative investment partnership commitment reviews, real estate closings, investment manager contract negotiations, private placement transactions, commercial loans and numerous other investment matters.
Our attorneys’ depth of experience – which includes time spent serving the Investment Section of the National Association of Public Pension Attorneys (NAPPA), the NAPPA Alternative Investments Working Group and as chief legal counsel for a $90 billion investment program – uniquely positions Reinhart to provide representation to institutional investors on investment legal matters.
Public pension plans and ERISA pension plans share many of the same issues in regard to fiduciary duty but also have significant differences. Reinhart’s Institutional Investor Services attorneys have decades of experience advising both ERISA and public pension plans on fiduciary matters on a national basis. We represent dozens of ERISA and public pension fiduciaries at pension plans of all sizes, and publish and speak extensively on fiduciary duty.
We advise a wide range of clients on fiduciary and benefit plan issues, including corporations, public plans, ESOPs and qualified pension plans. We count among our counsel an attorney who has served as the former vice president of the Wisconsin Chapter of the ESOP Association, as an officer of the National Employer Ownership Institute and as the former executive director of the National Employee Benefits Institute.
Reinhart has one of the oldest and largest pension fund practices in the United States. We represent hundreds of public, private and Taft-Hartley pension funds in more than 40 states. Reinhart attorneys have served as legal counsel to the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans and have helped develop the Stanford Institutional Investor Forum Report on Fund Governance Best Practices.
Our attorneys have experience advising both public pension plans and plans governed by ERISA on fiduciary, tax, benefits administration, plan design, compliance and other matters. From trustee training to fiduciary audits and advice on specific situations, Reinhart has the legal solutions sought by pension plan trustees and other fiduciaries.
Reinhart’s Institutional Investor Services team also independently reviews securities litigation. We assist institutional investors in determining how to most effectively manage their rights to recover money through securities claims. We have no interest in steering clients into unnecessary litigation to generate a large fee. Our goal is to add value by identifying cases and litigation strategies that will improve client recoveries, lower costs and deter future corporate fraud.
Most institutional investors adopt a securities litigation policy to guide their approach and identify criteria to be applied in evaluating specific cases. Reinhart frequently assists institutional investors in developing such policies and evaluating proposals from litigation counsel. We help clients identify activities that will add to the bottom line and avoid actions that are unlikely to be cost-effective.
We regularly provide counsel on the following securities litigation matters:
- Educating fiduciaries on class actions and corporate fraud litigation
- Providing assistance in developing a litigation policy and claim recovery procedure
- Conducting outside manager and custodian contract reviews to determine consistency with the client’s policy for management and filing of claims
- Reviewing class action claim filing procedures of the client’s custodian (or other claims service provider) for reliability
- Evaluating client claims and making recommendations in specific cases, including whether to file a separate case, seek lead plaintiff appointment, wait and file a settlement claim or actively monitor a class action
- Seeking other investors to support client involvement in specific cases, as appropriate
- Assisting in selection and retention of litigation or lead counsel in securities cases when needed
- Supervising lead or litigation counsel where the client becomes an active litigant
- Monitoring and reporting on passively-managed class actions
- Reviewing case settlements and attorneys’ fee requests and filing objections when appropriate
- Advising on when to join in filing amicus briefs or supporting declarations in securities cases
- Providing other custom services developed with the client to reduce litigation costs, increase recoveries, improve corporate governance, deter future losses or meet specific program needs
Six Reinhart attorneys have been named new shareholders.
Keith Johnson comments for Bloomberg News on why public pension plans might want to own shares of Tesla Motors Inc., even though the stock has been on a wild ride this year.
Reinhart Institutional Investor Services Chair Keith Johnson was quoted in a Huffington Post article on fiduciary duty rule.
This article identifies two common issues with fee transparency in the private equity industry and examines the Institutional Limited Partners Association’s (“ILPA”) Fee Reporting Template as one way to improve fee transparency.
Endowment fiduciaries should be attentive to the evolution of the investment industry knowledge base and to changes in the environment, economy and society, which can be material to short- or long-term investment risks and opportunities. There are new opportunities to pursue sustainable and mission-aligned investment without sacrificing results. Fiduciary duty principles and recent regulatory guidance encourage endowment trustees and managers to respond to these developments through a prudent process that focuses on better aligning investment practices with their nonprofit institution’s goals and mission.
The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 includes revamped partnership audit rules that may have a significant effect on private funds, including private equity and hedge funds. The new rules are effective for tax returns filed for the 2017 tax year, but this legislation is already driving changes to funds’ governing documents. This article provides an overview of the new rules and what changes investors should expect in fund agreements.