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Announcing MS&A's New IDR Department!

As the new year begins, I am excited to announce that we are adding a new practice area within the firm. In addition to the current practice areas of audits, civil liability, subrogation, workers' compensation, and employment law, we will now offer representation in matters related to California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) Industrial Disability Retirements (IDR). Joining me in this endeavor will be Siobhan Kennedy, Shannon Ripple, Lisa Hendricks, and Kimberly Mall.

The addition of this practice area is a natural next step in our representation of public entities. The public entity presence in our firm has grown steadily over the years, but in the last year we have seen explosive growth and many of our clients have requested that we represent them on IDR claims. We are delighted to begin offering this representation to the many cities, counties, and education institutes we serve throughout the state.

IDRs are a special type of retirement for safety officers and firefighters. This benefit is significantly different from workers' compensation claims and is handled in a completely separate arena. Many cities and counties utilize the CalPERS system, while other may have formed their own retirement service and disability systems. Furthermore, there are three different types of retirements for public employees which include Service Retirements, Service Pending Disability Retirement, and Industrial Disability Retirement. Only safety officers qualify for the 50 percent tax break regarding Industrial Disability Retirements, which is in lieu of public employees paying into Social Security. Although the IDRs are distinct from workers’ compensation claims, workers’ compensation matters can impact IDRs. As such, it is essential that those handling workers’ compensation matters for public entities have an understanding of CalPERS IDR benefits.

I am also pleased to announce that I will be speaking at the Public Agency Risk Management Association (PARMA) conference in February, where we will be available to provide more information on this new practice area, with the help of our wonderful Client Relations department. I look forward to the great things to come in 2024 and am excited to watch our law firm thrive this year.