Sara Van Houten counsels employers regarding all aspects of the design, operation and compliance of their employee benefit and executive compensation plans.
Sara advises clients on compliance with the Internal Revenue Code, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), the Affordable Care Act, COBRA and HIPAA.
Sara works with public and private companies to design and draft incentive compensation programs, omnibus equity plans, severance plans and change in control arrangements. She also has extensive experience with Section 409A compliance and corrections.
Sara assists clients with qualified retirement plans, including Section 401(k), defined contribution and defined benefit plans, and health and welfare benefit plans, including high deductible health plans, health savings accounts, cafeteria plans and flexible benefit plans. Her experience includes plan design and administration, drafting plan documents, SPDs and plan amendments, plan corrections, service provider and investment management agreement reviews, and preparing IRS and DOL submissions. Sara also helps clients with ERISA fiduciary issues and employee benefits planning in mergers and acquisitions.
University of Iowa College of Law (J.D., with distinction, 1996)
Senior Note and Comment Editor, Iowa Law Review
Dartmouth College (B.A., 1991)
State Bar of Arizona
State Bar of Iowa
American Bar Association
"Impact of the Dobbs Decision: An Employee Benefits and Labor & Employment Perspective", Co-Presenter, Western Pension & Benefits Council (Sept. 22, 2022)
"Section 409A in a Nutshell," Presenter, Snell & Wilmer Virtual CLE Series (June 23, 2022)
Homeless Legal Assistance (2022)
Child Crisis Arizona, Volunteer (2019-2021)
CVS Health, Legal Counsel
United States District Court, Northern District of Iowa, Law Clerk to Hon. Linda R. Reade
McLeod USA Publishing Company, Corporate Counsel
United States District Court, Northern District of Iowa, Law Clerk to Chief Magistrate Judge John A. Jarvey