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Rachel Urquhart

Of Counsel   |   Detroit (Metro)

Rachel Urquhart helps plan sponsors, fiduciaries, and insurers litigate and resolve employee benefit claims. Her extensive benefits litigation experience includes disability, life insurance, executive benefits, retirement plan, health care and COBRA benefits. She has successfully negotiated large settlements on behalf of Plans against record keepers for excess fees. Her litigation and administrative agency experience also includes claims, hearings, and investigations involving the DOL, EEOC, OFCCP and NLRB.

Rachel has over 20 years of both in-house and law firm experience providing employment and benefits law counseling. Her in-house experience provides a unique perspective to find practical solutions for strategic benefit plans that meet the demands of modern workforces while complying with the laws governing benefit rights. Rachel’s primary focus in both litigation and counseling is to help employers overcome conflict and achieve business goals efficiently.  Her ability to create mutually beneficial resolutions between parties with conflicting priorities led to a one-year appointment as a Deputy Director for the Department of Energy. In this role, Rachel led activities to strengthen and enhance the partnership between the DOE and its National Laboratories during the transition from the Obama to the Trump administration.

Rachel has worked closely with both public and private employers including health care providers and pharmacies, insurance companies and large employers administering ERISA benefits in-house, and prime federal contractors. She has provided HIPAA and FERPA training and compliance programs for health care plans, health care providers, and university health systems. She has hands-on experience navigating and fixing the systematic and regulatory challenges of merging, freezing and terminating benefit plans; moving record keepers; and implementing HCM systems that integrate with external benefit and payroll administrators.

Rachel has a deep commitment to helping youth in foster care. She has served as a foster parent for respite care, a Court Appointment Special Advocate for youth in the child welfare system, and an advocate for educational rights for children with development disabilities. In her spare time, she enjoys kayaking and biking in Michigan’s wonderful park system.

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