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Experience

Sharon Fountain counsels employers, individuals, and fiduciaries in employee benefits, executive compensation, and stock and incentive programs. Her experience includes advising on tax and ERISA issues involved in program design, administration of qualified and nonqualified deferred compensation programs and welfare benefit plans, preparation and review of plan and related documentation, and assistance with implementation and obtaining governmental approvals. Sharon also represents employers and executives with regard to employee benefits and executive compensation issues in mergers and acquisitions.

Sharon is recognized as a “Recommended Attorney” in The Legal 500 US 2014, 2015, and 2017, described as having an “excellent understanding of individual employee tax ramifications,” and according to clients quoted in the 2014 directory, she is “well regarded,” “exceptional,” and “deeply knowledgeable.”

35+

More than 35 years of experience in Tax and Employee Benefits Law

Representative Matters

  • Represent employers, both public and private, with regard to the preparation and implementation of long-term incentive plans, featuring incentive and nonqualified stock options, restricted stock and restricted stock units, and other equity awards
  • Represent employers, both public and private, with regard to nonqualified deferred compensation plans, including compliance with Internal Revenue Code section 409A
  • Represent employers with regard to qualified defined contribution and defined benefit plans
  • Represent employers with regard to health and welfare benefit plans
  • Represent individual executives with regard to executive compensation and benefits matters

Honors & Affiliations

Distinctions/Honors

  • The Best Lawyers in America® by Woodward/White Inc. (Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law, Tax Law), 2001-2020
  • Texas Super Lawyers® by Thomson Reuters (Employee Benefits/ERISA), 2003-2018
  • Who’s Who Legal: Texas by Law Business Research Limited (Employee Benefits), 2007-present
  • Best Lawyers in Dallas (Tax: ERISA/Employee Benefits), D Magazine, 2012-2019
  • Recommended Attorney, The Legal 500 US by Legalease (Labor and Employment: Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation; Tax: Domestic Tax; Tax: International Tax; Labor and Employment: Employee Health and Retirement Plans), 2014, 2015, 2017, 2019
  • Tax Directors Handbook, The Essential Guide to the World’s Premier Tax Law Firms, 2014

Memberships/Affiliations

  • Member, American Bar Association; Tax Section, Employee Benefits Committee
  • Member, State Bar of Texas; Tax Section, Employee Benefits Committee
  • Member, Dallas Bar Association; Tax Section; Past Chair, Employee Benefits/Executive Compensation Section
  • Board of Trustees, Dallas Women’s Foundation, 2006-2010
  • Board of Directors, YWCA of Metropolitan Dallas, 1994-2000; President of the Board, 1998-2000
  • Leadership Dallas, Class of 1995-1996
  • Fellow, Dallas Bar Foundation
  • Fellow, Texas Bar Foundation
  • Fellow, American Bar Foundation

Education & Admissions

Education

  • J.D., 1982, Duke University School of Law
  • B.A., 1979, with highest honors, Ohio University, Phi Beta Kappa

Admissions

  • Texas

Related Team

Jason Patrick Loden

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Jessica S. Morrison

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Neely P. Munnerlyn

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Employee Benefits