Jonathan R. Shank: Lawyer with Edwards Wildman Palmer LLP

Jonathan R. Shank

Providence,  RI  U.S.A.
Phone617 239 0157

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Experience & CredentialsOther Offices

Practice Areas

  • Litigation Management
  • Labor & Employment
  • Benefits & Compensation
  • Complex Litigation
University Hobart College, B.A., 2003
Law SchoolSuffolk University Law School, J.D., cum laude, 2008
AdmittedRhode Island; Massachusetts; U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit; U.S. District Court, District of Massachusetts; U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit; U.S. District Court, District of Rhode Island; U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit


Rhode Island Bar Association
Massachusetts Bar Association
American Bar Association - Labor & Employment Law Section

BornProvidence, Rhode Island, July 29, 1980

Jonathan Shank is an associate in the Litigation Management Group where he represents employers in all areas of employment and employee benefits law. He counsels and defends several national corporate clients on a variety of issues under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (“ERISA”). Jonathan's ERISA litigation experience includes defending against claims to recover plan benefits, breach of fiduciary duty, estoppel, interference, and other ERISA matters. He also assists clients with ERISA compliance issues, including fiduciary counseling, benefit plan design, and administration modification. Jonathan's employment litigation practice involves defending employers in a wide range of employment law matters, including claims of discrimination, harassment, retaliation, wrongful discharge, as well as non-competition, breach of contract, defamation and employee stock disputes before FINRA and in federal and state courts throughout the country.
•Obtained summary judgment on behalf of a financial institution in an action by a former employee under CEPA, New Jersey's whistleblower protection law.

•Secured dismissal of Title VII, ADEA, wrongful termination, and intentional infliction of emotional distress claims in an action against a major financial institution and the managing executive of company's wealth management division.

•Obtained summary judgment on former employee's claims of retaliation and interference under the FMLA.

•Co-authored the winning brief before the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals which affirmed a grant of summary judgment to an employee welfare benefit plan in a participant's action for benefits under ERISA.

•Helped obtain a victory on behalf of an employee welfare benefit plan and insurance company when the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the former employee's wrongful denial of benefits and breach of fiduciary duty claims, including her claim to equitable relief under CIGNA Corp. v. Amara, 131 S. Ct. 1866 (2011).

•Part of the successful team representing a client in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan in a multiple-plaintiff action for severance benefits under ERISA following a corporation's change in control.

•Helped secure dismissal of claims for wrongful denial of benefits, intentional interference and failure to provide plan documents under ERISA, as well as a common law breach of contract claim in a suit involving an employer's severance plan.

•Successfully defended against claims of intentional interference with advantageous business relations and intentional infliction of emotional distress in Massachusetts state court.

•Obtained summary judgment on behalf of a client in an action pending in Alabama state court that involved claims of retaliatory discharge, reckless conduct and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

•Secured the dismissal of a claim of public accommodation discrimination pending against a client in South Carolina state court.

Before Edwards Wildman

Before joining the firm, Jonathan completed a judicial clerkship with the Honorable Francis X. Flaherty, Associate Justice of the Rhode Island Supreme Court. While in law school, Jonathan served as Note Editor of the Suffolk University Law Review and competed on the Constitutional Law Moot Court Team. He won the Suffolk Law Jurisprudence Award in Labor Law and interned for the Honorable Mary M. Lisi, Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Rhode Island. Prior to attending law school, Jonathan worked as a public policy analyst for an international trade association in Boston.

Besides Edwards Wildman

Jonathan is a proud mentor through Rhode Islanders Sponsoring Education (“RISE”) and volunteers at the Reservoir Avenue Elementary School in Providence through the Power Lunch Program. He enjoys skiing, tennis, and golf, and is an avid fan of all of the New England professional sports teams.

Edwards Wildman Client Advisory: Supreme Court To Decide Whether Employers Are Required To Provide Accommodations To Pregnant Employees
December 4, 2014
Edwards Wildman Client Advisory: Effective July 1, 2015, Massachusetts Employers Are Required to Provide Earned Sick Leave to Employees
November 6, 2014
Edwards Wildman Client Advisory: United States Supreme Court Rejects Presumption of Prudence for Stock-Drop Cases
June 2014
Edwards Wildman Client Advisory: Supreme Court Declines To Review Action Involving Reimbursement Of Benefits Under ERISA 502(a)(3)
June 11, 2014
Supreme Court Upholds ERISA Plan's Limitations Period
December 19, 2013
Client Advisory - Rhode Island Becomes The Third State To Provide Paid Family Leave For Employees
July 2013
Client Advisory - California Retailers Beware: Civil Penalties are Available for Suitable Seating Violations
May 2011
Client Advisory - Rhode Island District Court Rules That Offensive Comments About President Obama Do Not Create A Hostile Work Environment
April 2011


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United States Supreme Court Rejects Presumption of Prudence for Stock-Drop Cases
Lori A. Basilico,Jonathan R. Shank, July 1, 2014
In a highly anticipated decision, the United States Supreme Court held that fiduciaries of employee stock ownership plans (“ESOPs”) are not entitled to any special presumption of prudence when investing in employer stock. In Fifth Third Bancorp v. Dudenhoffer, the Supreme Court rejected...
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Office Information

Jonathan R. Shank

2800 Financial Plaza
ProvidenceRI 02903


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