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Jocz, Bruce R.
Bruce R. Jocz
P: +1.713.221.1109
F: +1.713.221.2189

Michelle Newton


Bruce Jocz advises public and privately held corporations in the design and implementation of employee benefit programs, including qualified and non-qualified plans and executive compensation programs. Mr. Jocz structures the employee benefit aspects of corporate reorganizations, acquisitions, mergers and divestitures to comply with the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) and to maximize income tax benefits.

Regarding qualified plans, Mr. Jocz counsels clients in all aspects of designing qualified defined contribution and defined benefit plans, and has experience with employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs). He provides daily counsel to plan administrators and trustees on distributions, filing, Qualified Domestic Relations Orders, and fiduciary duties in plan administration, reorganization and termination.

Mr. Jocz designs non-qualified plans and cash- and equity-based executive compensation plans to meet the focused needs of highly compensated and key corporate employees, including advice with respect to compliance with Section 162(m) and 409A of the Internal Revenue Code. He has particular experience in the tax analysis of such benefits upon a change of control. While attending law school, Mr. Jocz was employed as a tax accountant by Deloitte, Haskins & Sells. After several years of practice as a tax attorney, he joined Bracewell LLP as partner in charge of the firm’s employee benefits section and ERISA practice.

Representative Matters

Represents Great Plains Energy Incorporated in its pending acquisition of Westar Energy, Inc. in a combined cash and stock transaction valued at approximately $12.2 billion. 

Advised Phillips 66 regarding the transfer of employees and related employee benefit issues in the $1.4 billion sale of Phillips Specialty Products Inc. to Berkshire Hathaway.

Represented Apache Corporation in the transfer of employees and employee benefits  in sale of Apache's  Gulf of Mexico shelf operations and properties to Fieldwood Energy LLC, an affiliate of Riverstone Holdings LLC for $3.75 billion. 

Represented Lufkin Industries Inc. in a merger with General Electric Co. for approximately $3.3 billion.  Provided counsel on employee benefit and executive compensation issues.

Represents a major Houston private equity firm in all acquisitions and divestitures with respect to the employee benefits analysis.

Provides equity and cost incentive compensation plans for many Fortune 500 companies.

Provides assistance in the administration and compliance of employee benefit plans, including qualified plans.

Provides assistance to many employers in the implementation and administration of deferred compensation arrangements, including compliance with code section 409A.


J.D., South Texas College of Law Houston, 1980
B.B.A., The University of Texas at Austin, 1976

Bar Admissions



State Bar of Texas
Houston Bar Association


Legalease, The Legal 500 United States, Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation, 2010-2016; Alternative/Hedge Funds, 2015-2016; Energy: Transactions, 2014
Thomson Reuters, Texas Super Lawyers, 2003-2004, 2007
Martindale-Hubbell® AV® Preeminent™ Rating