Karen K. Hartford

T: (207) 253-4910
  • University of Maine School of Law (J.D., 1999), cum laude
  • Wesleyan University (B.A., 1994)


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AV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell
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Keep up with changes and trends in benefits and compensation.
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Selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© 2019.


Karen partners with employers of all sizes on a broad range of employee benefit plan design, drafting, implementation, and operational matters. A substantial portion of Karen’s practice is devoted to advising clients with respect to their group health benefits, including cafeteria plans, self-insured plans, consumer-directed/HDHPs, HRAs, and HSAs, and providing guidance on HIPAA, COBRA, and ACA compliance. Karen also has significant experience working with defined contribution and defined benefit pension plans, with particular experience de-risking plans, terminating plans, filing voluntary correction submissions with the IRS and DOL, handling benefit claim disputes, and drafting and reviewing QDROs. Karen enjoys working closely with her clients to develop the most effective, practical, and efficient solution to each matter.

Karen serves on the Firm’s Diversity Committee and currently chairs the Firm’s Associate Mentoring and Training Committee.

Prior to joining Verrill Dana in 2001, Karen was associated with another Portland law firm where she practiced primarily in the area of employee benefits law. Karen has been recognized by several attorney ranking organizations as a leader in the area of Employee Benefits.

Karen is a native Mainer and thoroughly enjoys the outdoors through all seasons with her husband and two young boys.


Maine State Bar Association
Maine Employee Benefits Council
New England Employee Benefits Council 


  • University of Maine School of Law (J.D., 1999), cum laude
  • Wesleyan University (B.A., 1994)

Bar Admissions

  • Maine, 1999


AV Preeminent Rated by Martindale-Hubbell
Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© under Employee Benefits 
    (ERISA) Law
Selected by peers for inclusion in New England Rising Stars© under
     Employee Benefits