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Nossaman LLP

Michael V. Toumanoff

Of Counsel

T 213.612.7845
F 213.612.7801
777 South Figueroa Street, 34th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90017

Michael Toumanoff has specialized, for more than 25 years, in the law affecting public retirement system fiduciaries, and has represented and advised several California public pension systems, including KCERA, LACERA, SBCERA, SDCERS, and the Pasadena Fire & Police Retirement System, on a variety of issues.

Mr. Toumanoff has authored and co-authored formal opinions on many issues concerning California public pension systems, including, in 1993, the first comprehensive opinion on the then newly-enacted Proposition 162 for the State Association of County Retirement Systems (SACRS); the scope of members' vested constitutional rights in a variety of contexts; the financial provisions of the 1937 County Employees Retirement Law under both the regular and alternate provisions in Articles 5 and 5.5; benefit issues; and conflict issues concerning trustees with conflicting public duties. He has reviewed, drafted, and negotiated investment manager contracts for retirement systems and, in 1999, as counsel for the Pasadena Fire & Police Retirement System, negotiated and drafted a $100 million contribution agreement with the City to restore the actuarial soundness of the retirement system.

Throughout the years, Mr. Toumanoff has spoken before SACRS, the California Association of Public Retirement Systems, and the Institutional Investor Institute on various issues, including Proposition 162, system funding, and conflicts of interest. He has also presented on fiduciary issues faced by counsel to public retirement systems at various programs sponsored by the National Association of Public Pension Attorneys, where he has served as lead chair of the Fiduciary and Plan Governance Section, as a member of the Executive Board, and is currently a member of the Emeritus Board.  He also is one of the founders of the Oaks School in Hollywood, California (1986).

Representative Work

  • Corcoran v. CCCERA, 60 Cal. App. 4th 89 (1997). Successfully upheld the retirement board's status as the "governing body" of the system.
  • Howard Jarvis Taxpayers' Assn. v. Board of Supervisors, 41 Cal. App. 4th 1363 (1996). Successfully upheld the LACERA board's decision to include cashable flexible benefits in the calculation of retirement benefits.
  • Legislature v. Eu, 54 Cal. 3d 492 (1991). Successfully upheld the California Public Employees' Retirement System's position that federal constitutional vested rights invalidated a newly-enacted provision in the California Constitution cutting off legislators' rights to continue to accrue service credit.
  • In re Retirement Cases, 110 Cal. App. 4th 426 (2003). Represented the retirement boards of CCERA, KCERA, LACERA, and the SBCERA in cases and class actions arising in response to the California Supreme Court's decision in Ventura County Deputy Sheriffs' Assn. v. Board of Retirement, 16 Cal. 4th 483 (1997).
Michael V. Toumanoff
Michael V. Toumanoff

Practices

Education

J.D, University of California, Berkeley School of Law, 1982, Member, Moot Court Board

A.B., Harvard University, 1975, magna cum laude in Government

Admissions

California

Professional Affiliations

Emeritus Executive Board, National Association of Public Pension Attorneys (NAPPA)

Co-Chair of the Fiduciary and Plan Governance Section, 2004-2005, National Association of Public Pension Attorneys (NAPPA)

Lead Chair of the Fiduciary and Plan Governance Section 2006-2007, National Association of Public Pension Attorneys (NAPPA)

Executive Board, 2008-2014, National Association of Public Pension Attorneys (NAPPA)

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