Lisa J. Mills
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Partner

Ottawa

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Year of Call: Ontario, 1997

Overview Representative Work Awards & Accolades Associations & Memberships Education

Lisa is a senior lawyer at BMKP Law practicing in the areas of pension, benefits and executive compensation law.

Lisa has over 25 years of experience providing advice to pension plan sponsors and administrators regarding pension plan design, regulatory compliance and all other aspects of administering defined benefit and defined contribution pension plans.

Lisa appears as counsel on pension and benefit matters including in class proceedings and in the arbitration context and regularly advises private and public sector employers on the pension and benefits aspects of corporate transactions and insolvencies. Lisa has assisted numerous employers on pension plan consolidations, the establishment of new plans and updated governance frameworks and on the legal aspects of defined benefit plan de-risking. Lisa also provides advice on the income tax aspects of pension, benefits and other employment matters.

Lisa completed the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants In-Depth Tax Course and has significant experience in resolving the income tax elements of pension and benefit matters.

Lisa co-authored the Public Pensions title of the Canadian Encyclopedic Digest from 2012 – 2015 and now leverages her in-depth knowledge of the Canada Pension Plan to advise employers regarding CPP enhancements and their impact on employer sponsored pension plan design.

Lisa designed and taught the Pensions and the Law course at Queen’s University from 2009 – 2013.

Representative Work

  • Advised on the resolution of a complex multi-party pension and retiree benefits dispute and related pension asset transfers and retiree benefits consolidation.
  • Advises the employer sponsor of a newly established jointly sponsored pension plan and the associated governance and regulatory aspects of the consolidation of multiple single employer pension plans.
  • Acted as pension counsel in a number of pension and retiree benefits labour arbitrations and in disputes before other administrative tribunals.
  • Advised the employer sponsor of a public sector jointly sponsored pension plan on the creation of a new benefit option for the not-for-profit sector.
  • Negotiated the transition of a specialized retirement income plan and investment structure to a new decumulation platform.
  • Regularly advises on pension buy-in and buy-out annuity contract provisions and other de-risking initiatives including a novel multi-tranche indexed annuity transaction.
  • Implemented a number of conversions from defined benefit to defined contribution pension plans for both provincially and federally regulated employers.
  • Acted as pension counsel in multiple insolvency proceedings.
  • Advised several employers in their negotiations for the conversion of their existing defined benefit and hybrid registered pension plans to a newly created $10 billion multi-employer jointly sponsored pension plan, involving multiple unions and other interested stakeholders.

Awards & Accolades

  • Chambers Canada (2020-2022)
    Band 4: Pensions & Benefits – Nationwide – Canada
  • The Best Lawyers in Canada™ (2019-2023)
    Employee Benefits Law
  • Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory (2016-2022)
    Consistently Recommended: Pensions & Employee Benefits – Employer
  • Lexpert Rising Stars Award (2009)
  • Lexpert Zenith Award (2018)
  • Who’s Who Legal: Canada (2019-2021)
    National Leader: Labour, Employment & Benefits
  • Who’s Who Legal: Global Guide (2019-2022)
    Global Leader: Pensions & Benefits

Associations & Memberships

  • Canadian Bar Association | Member, Pension and Benefits Law and Taxation Law Sections
  • Ontario Bar Association | Member, Pensions and Benefits Law and Taxation Law Sections
  • International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans | Member
  • Institute of Corporate Directors | Member
  • Canada Revenue Agency Registered Plans Division Stakeholder Consultation Group | Participant
  • Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario, Standing Committee for Defined Benefit Single-Employer Pension Plans | Member
  • Queen’s University Faculty of Law | Sessional Instructor, Pensions and the Law (2009-2013)
  • PHSS Medical & Complex Care in Community Board of Directors | Board Member (2022)

Education

  • Institute of Corporate Directors and Rotman School of Management, NFP Governance Essentials Program (2022)
  • Ontario Bar Association, Foundations of Adjudicative Tribunal Competencies Certificate Program (2022)
  • University of Toronto, LL.B.
  • McMaster University, B. Comm. (Hons.)

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