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WHITE HOUSE LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM

2020 Cohort

Thomas Tso headshot

Thomas Tso

Expert on retirement and welfare benefits law

Department of Labor


Mr. Tso is the counsel for appellate and special litigation with the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of the Solicitor, Plan Benefits Security Division in Washington D.C. 

Mr. Tso advises the Department’s leadership on major cases and legal problems involving the regulation of retirement and welfare benefits. He supervises the Department’s briefs in the courts of appeals concerning a broad array of regulatory, statutory and constitutional issues related to employee benefits. Mr. Tso supervises the Department’s participation in the Supreme Court and served as co-counsel on eight briefs. He also led teams in defense of several major regulations. 

Before serving as counsel, Mr. Tso litigated high profile cases for the Department, including cases related to investments with Madoff. Mr. Tso also briefed and argued several cases in the courts of appeals.

Mr. Tso speaks frequently at public events on employee benefit issues. He was awarded the Department of Labor’s Office of the Solicitor’s Mary-Helen Mautner Award for individual excellence in appellate litigation. 

Mr. Tso most recently served a detail as a Senior Counselor to the Solicitor of Labor. Before joining the Department of Labor, Mr. Tso served as a judicial law clerk to the Honorable James L. Dennis, a Circuit Judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans.

Mr. Tso earned a B.A. in East Asian Studies from Princeton University, holds a M.A. in East Asian Studies from Harvard University, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. 

He will be working on the Cross-Agency Priority Goal Getting Payments Right. The objective of this goal is to demonstrate stewardship of taxpayer dollars by reducing monetary loss and making payments correctly the first time.