Linda A. Wilkins - Wilkins Finston Friedman Law Group, LLP

Linda A. Wilkins

Listed in Best Lawyers since 2006
Phone: 214-736-8888

Linda Wilkins is an employee benefits and executive compensation attorney with over 25 years of experience.  She is Board Certified in Tax Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.  Since 2003, Linda has been listed as a Texas Super Lawyer® by Law & Politics magazine, and has been listed in Best Lawyers In America since 2006 in the field of employee benefits law.

Linda's experience includes representing companies and their boards of directors with compensation strategies and benefit plans to recruit and retain key executives. Linda also helps executives understand and negotiate their employment contracts and long-term incentive plans. And, she specializes in exit strategies for business owners, including ESOP transactions. Linda has extensive experience with stock incentive plans, change of control agreements and mergers and acquisitions.

Linda received her J.D. degree from the University of Oklahoma College of Law, where she served as editor-in-chief of the Oklahoma Law Review. She received her LL.M. degree in Taxation from Southern Methodist University. Linda has served on the faculty as an adjunct professor teaching employee benefits and ERISA litigation at SMU Dedman School of Law.

Before forming her own firm in October 2009, Linda was a partner with the firm of Locke Lord Bissell & Liddell for over 25 years.

Additional Information

Wilkins Finston Friedman Law Group: Our Mission Statement — We were founded in 2011 by partners with a passion for creating a new business model.  Our seven attorneys have combined experience of over 100 years in this boutique practice area with large regional, national and international firms. We exist because our founding partners decided to offer our clients a new business model more suited to their needs.  The same technology and innovation that is driving our clients’ businesses is driving our business. Resources once available only to large law firms are now readily available to any firm, regardless of size.  The legacy cost structure pushing up others' hourly rates does not impact our firm.  Our attorneys thrive in a setting that stresses a diverse, collaborative effort. THIS is why we exist.
University of Oklahoma College of LawJ.D. 1977Southern Methodist UniversityLL.M 1985
National Association of Stock Plan ProfessionalsNational Association of Women and Minority Owned Law Firms (NAMWOLF)Southwest Benefits AssociationAmerican Bar Association Tax Section, Employee Benefits Committee

Case History

Leveraged buy-outs, ESOP transactions and compensation committee representation — Represented the management team in a $170M leveraged buyout by a private equity firm, negotiated terms for equity participation and employment agreements.  
Represented a family-owned business in adopting an employee stock ownership plan to acquire 100% ownership and elect S corporation status.  Advised the company in on-going compliance, obtaining IRS approval and responding to Department of Labor investigation.
Represented the CEO of a start-up joint venture established by five public companies, negotiated his participation as a net profits partner in the LLC and negotiated employment agreement terms.
Represented the compensation committee of a publicly traded company in designing executive compensation strategies and preparing the executive compensation disclosures for the proxy statement, advised regarding obtaining ISS/Riskmetrics positive recommendation on the program, including the design of a performance-based restricted stock plan.

Client Comments

"Linda Wilkins is an extremely able and knowledgeable attorney. Primarily, she is our advisor on ERISSA and ESOP issues. These are highly technical areas of law and Linda does more than advise; she understands our operation and ensures that we remain in technical compliance so that we retain all legal rights and benefits. She is thinking about what needs to be done and regularly makes suggestions as to what might work. I like the fact that she can change her opinion and when there are problems or concerns, she will address them promptly and directly."

-Steve Saunders
Tempo Mechanical Services, Inc.

"Linda is great to work with and is very knowledgeable. She speaks directly to the matter and gives her clients clear direction. Linda can take a complicated subject and put it into an understandable context. She is extremely helpful to our fund and to our portfolio companies on matters such as 401(k) issues and deferred compensation plans. Linda is responsive and does the necessary follow-up. I highly recommend working with her."

"Linda is an extraordinarily gifted executive compensation and employment attorney and is extremely knowledgeable of the impact of legislation from recent years on the structure of employment agreements for key executives so as to avoid litigation and intrusion into benefits under corporate restructuring related to merger/acquisition transactions. Her outstanding efforts on behalf of our management team prior to a sale process eliminated the distracting and tasteless renegotiations that often accompany such events, allowing the executive team to receive full compensation consistent with their pre-existing agreements. I know of no other labor and employment attorney of her caliber and would highly recommend her without restriction. "

-Thomas Walker
Brittany Partners, LLC

Office Location

CBS Tower, Suite 1150
12001 North Central Expressway
Dallas, TX 75243
United States

Lawyer of the Year Awards

2017 Lawyer of the Year in Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law of the Dallas/Fort Worth Metro Area
Linda A. Wilkins has earned a Lawyer of the Year award for 2017!

Practice Areas

Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law (ERISA, ESOPS, Executive Compensation, Fiduciary Responsibility, Government Plans, Pension, Health and Welfare, Qualified Plans, Trusts and Estates)

Other Information

Gender: Female