P. Brian Bartels

(402) 231-8897
(402) 346-1148 Fax

Mr. Bartels is a partner in the firm's Omaha office. He works with public (governmental), tax-exempt, and private sector clients on employee benefit plan issues. He advises clients on health and welfare plans, cafeteria plans, fringe benefits, and qualified and nonqualified plans. Mr. Bartels counsels clients on benefit plan design and administration issues and drafts plan documents, amendments, and summary plan descriptions. He assists clients with issues relating to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended ("ERISA"). Since 2010, Mr. Bartels has worked closely with clients on questions regarding the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, as amended, and its implementing regulations. Mr. Bartels also counsels clients on employee benefit issues in the context of mergers, acquisitions, and divestitures.

Representative Experience

  • Advised employers on health care reform implementation issues, including the Early Retiree Reinsurance Program, summary of benefits and coverage documents, coverage of adult children, preexisting condition exclusions, and annual and lifetime limits on benefits.
  • Drafted a variety of benefit plan documents, including cafeteria plans, health flexible spending arrangements, health reimbursement arrangements, dependent care assistance plans, wrap plans, and mobile electronic device reimbursement plans.
  • Reviewed and negotiated administrative services agreements for governmental self-insured health plans.
  • Drafted fiduciary handbooks for a variety of employee benefit plans, including 403(b) plans, 401(a) plans (defined benefit and defined contribution), a 457 plan, and a voluntary employees’ beneficiary association ("VEBA").
  • Advised multistate employer on income taxation of group health plan coverage provided to legally married same-sex spouses of employees following United States v. Windsor.
  • Prepared voluntary correction program ("VCP") applications and related documents.


  • P. Brian Bartels (co-author), "Fiduciary Duties in the Public Sector," Benefits Magazine, April 2015.
  • P. Brian Bartels, "All (Not) Aboard: The Eighth Circuit Creates a Split in Authority By Determining a Single-Participant "Plan" is not an ERISA Plan in Dakota, Minnesota & Eastern R.R. Corp. v. Schieffer," 47 CREIGHTON L. REV. 539 (September 2014).
  • P. Brian Bartels and Daniel J. Wintz, "Considerations for Employee Benefit Plans and Human Resource Practices Following United States v. Windsor," The Nebraska Lawyer, Sept./Oct. 2013, at 9.
  • P. Brian Bartels, "Preventing Coffee Cooperation From Grinding to a Halt: An Institutional Analysis of the International Coffee Agreements’ Enforcement Mechanisms and Recommendations for Achieving Long-Term Cooperation in the International Coffee Trade," 42 CREIGHTON L. REV. 279 (April 2009).


  • "Elect to Have a Winning Benefit Plan," Kutak Rock LLP Annual Employment Law Seminar, November 2018, Omaha, NE.
  • "How 'Well' is Your Wellness Program? Preparing for a 'Check-Up' From the Regulators," Employers Council on Flexible Compensation’s 31st Annual Symposium, August 2018, San Diego, CA.
  • "Employee Benefits Update, Protecting Corporate Interests from Inside, "Client Seminar Hosted by Kutak Rock LLP, June 2017, Kansas City, MO.
  • "It’s Not a Trivial Pursuit: Keeping Current on Changes in Employee Benefits Law," Kutak Rock LLP Annual Employment Law Seminar, November 2016, Omaha, NE.
  • "Being Prepared for a HIPAA Audit," Client Webinar Hosted by Kutak Rock LLP, May 2016.
  • "The Affordable Care Act Beat: Issues and Considerations for 2015 and Beyond," Kutak Rock LLP Annual Employment Law Seminar, November 2015, Omaha, NE.
  • "Health Care Reform & Same-Sex Spouse Benefits, Protecting Corporate Interests from Inside," Client Seminar Hosted by Kutak Rock LLP, June 2014, Kansas City, MO.
  • Panelist for the 2014 Creighton Law Review Symposium "The Future of Employee Benefits in America: Emerging Issues Surrounding ERISA and Employee Benefits." Creighton University School of Law, Omaha, Nebraska, March 27, 2014.
  • Invited Testifier, Judiciary Committee of the Nebraska Legislature, November 2013 (selected legal consequences of the United States v. Windsor decision).