David Thornton helps employers deliver retirement, health and welfare benefits to their executives and employees. With more than 30 years of experience, he has developed a diverse practice counseling hundreds of public and private employers and non-profit organizations in drafting, maintaining and administering retirement plans ranging from $1 million to several billion dollars in assets, including many in the $100 million to $500 million asset range. He has deep experience in ESOP transactions, successfully navigating the significant fiduciary duty considerations and tax code requirements involved with these transactions.
Memphis Bar Association — Treasurer (1992), Director (1991), Young Lawyers Division
Tennessee Bar Association — Corporation and Business Law Section
American Bar Association — Business Law Section
American Health Lawyers Association (AHLA)
We have successfully defended our clients against roughly $26 million in ACA employer mandate penalties, which relate to the ACA mandate that requires employers with 50 or more full-time employees to offer minimum essential health coverage to those employees (and their children up to age 26) or be subject to penalties.
We represented a civil engineering company in establishing an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) and successfully acquiring 49% of the company in a leveraged transaction in the amount of $6.6 million.
We represented a recycling corporation in the establishment of an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) used to acquire 100% of the company in a leveraged transaction in the amount of $51.5 million.
Represented Dobbs Equity Partners in its acquisition of a majority interest in Corky’s.
Represented NN, Inc. (Nasdaq: NNBR) in its acquisition of Paragon Medical
Represented the trustee in the formation of an ESOP for a real estate investment firm located in Memphis, Tennessee
Represented an investment advisory and wealth management firm located in Memphis, Tennessee, with respect to its ESOP
Represented a business management company located in Germantown, Tennessee, in the closing of a large ESOP transaction over the course of a year
Represented NN, Inc. in its sale of the Precision Bearing Components Group to Tsubaki Nakashima Co. for $388 million
Represented a publically-traded manufacturing company in the consolidation of three pension plans and three 401(k) plans following its $1.4 billion acquisition of another company
Best Lawyers in America® — Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law; Litigation: ERISA (2006-2019)
Best Lawyers in America® — Memphis Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law “Lawyer of the Year” (2019)
Mid-South Super Lawyers (2006, 2010-2018)
Memphis Business Journal “Best of the Bar” — Private Firm, Large (2018 finalist)
MBQ: Inside Memphis Business “Power Players”
Beta Gamma Sigma
Phi Eta Sigma
Phi Kappa Phi
Phi Alpha Delta
American Jurisprudence Award in Family Law