Subject: Any topic in the field of employee benefits law.
Open to: Any J.D. and graduate (LL.M. or S.J.D.) law students enrolled at any time between August 14, 2014 and August 15, 2015.
Submit by: June 2, 2015
Prizes: ACEBC Award: $1,500; Sidney M. Perlstadt Memorial Award: $1,500
Winners will be honored during the College’s annual black tie dinner on September 19, 2015 in Chicago, IL. They will receive a plaque and an employee benefits treatise published by Bloomberg BNA Books. If deemed suitable by the editors, one or more of the winning papers will be published by the Bloomberg BNA Pension and Benefits Reporter, the Bloomberg BNA Tax Management Compensation Planning Journal or another employee benefits publication. The winning papers will also be distributed to the Fellows of the American College of Employee Benefits Counsel, experienced attorneys who have made significant contributions to the advancement of the employee benefits field in a wide range of practice settings including law and consulting firms, universities, labor unions, advocacy organizations and government agencies throughout the United States. For information concerning the American College of Employee Benefits Counsel, consult the website.
Eligibility/Topics. Except as provided in (6) below, applicants must be enrolled full-time or part-time in law school between August 15, 2014 and August 15, 2015 and seeking a J.D. or a graduate law degree (e.g., LL.M. or S.J.D.). Papers must deal with employee benefits topics. As an illustrative example, a paper might address legal issues involving health benefits, pensions, 401(k) plans, severance, executive compensation, claims, appeals, current or former spouses’ or domestic partners’ benefits, collectively-bargained benefits, benefits in bankruptcy, ERISA litigation, fiduciary obligations or the tax treatment of benefits/contributions.
- Papers should not exceed 40 pages (double-spaced, in 12 point type, with an inch margin on each side), not including footnotes. Footnotes should be single-spaced endnotes starting on a separate page.
- Papers must be submitted as email attachments and should be submitted as Word or .pdf documents. No information identifying the author or law school should be included in the text, the footnotes, or the filename. That information, an address, a telephone number and enrollment status information should be provided in the email message.
- Submissions may include papers prepared for class assignments, law journals or other purposes, as well as those written especially for the Prize.
- Student papers submitted for publication in law reviews or other law school journals or periodicals but not yet published are eligible for the Prize, provided that (i) the version submitted for the Prize does not reflect any changes made to the paper after submission of the manuscript to any publication and (ii) the College receives any consents necessary to publish.
Selection of Winners. Winning papers will be selected by the Writing Prize Committee based on the factors they deem relevant. Among other facts, the Committee will consider: (i) depth and creativity of legal analysis; (ii) thoroughness of legal research; (iii) organization and writing style; (iv) difficulty of subject matter; and (v) consideration of employee benefits policy implications. The determination of the Committee is final. It is anticipated that winners will be notified by July 24, 2015, or shortly thereafter.
Publication of Winning Articles(s). The College will use its best efforts to arrange for publication of the winning papers in the BNA Pension and Benefits Reporter, the BNA Tax Management Compensation Planning Journal or other professional publications, subject to receiving any necessary consents from the author and any other journal. In addition, the winning papers will be distributed to the Fellows of the College.
Prizes. Cash prizes will be awarded for up to two winning papers. The College may, in its discretion, decide to split prizes, to award additional prizes or to award fewer than two awards. Winners will be guests of the College during its annual black tie dinner to be held on September 19, 2015 in Chicago IL.
Deadline. Papers must be submitted in the manner described in paragraph 1(b) above and must be received no later than Midnight, Eastern Time, on June 2, 2015.
Disclaimer. The College disclaims responsibility for any failure to give due consideration to any submission due to any email or other electronic transmission, storage or archival errors, regardless of the cause. However, the Committee may waive the eligibility requirements applicable to any student whose submitted paper was not afforded due consideration on account of such an error in a prior year’s contest.