LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
High Court Rejects ‘Prevailing Party’ Standard In ERISA Fees Case

WASHINGTON, D.C. — (Mealey’s) The U.S. Supreme Court on May 24 ruled that Employee Retirement Income Security Act Section 502(g)(1) provides a district court discretion to award fees and costs to either party as long as that party has achieved “some degree of success on the merits,”...

High Court Hears Oral Arguments In ERISA Plan Documents Case

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The U.S. Supreme Court on Nov. 30 considered whether a showing of "likely harm" was sufficient to entitle participants in or beneficiaries of an employee benefits plan governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act to recover benefits based on an alleged inconsistency...

Supreme Court Says ERISA Permits District Court To Reform Pension Plan

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (Mealey's) The U.S. Supreme Court on May 16 ruled that although Section 502(a)(1)(B) of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act does not permit a district court to reform the terms of a pension plan, Section 502(a)(3) does authorize such relief ( CIGNA Corporation, et al. v...

District Court's Discretion To Award Attorneys' Fees Under ERISA After Hardt

With respect to the exercise of discretion to award attorneys' fees under ERISA, what is the impact of the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Hardt v. Reliance Std. Life Ins. Co. , 130 S. Ct. 2149 (U.S. 2010) [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers / unenhanced version available from lexisONE...

Tribune Co., Former Employees Reach $32 Million Agreement On ERISA Claims

CHICAGO - (Mealey's) The Tribune Co., which is in Chapter 11 bankruptcy, announced Oct. 20 that it has reached a $32 million settlement with former employees who had sued the company alleging violations of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), which may provide Tribune with...

Williams Mullen: Corporate Spin-Off, New Retirement Plan Did Not Violate Employees’ Rights Under ERISA

Nauman v. Abbott Laboratories , No. 10-2272 (7th Cir. February 3, 2012) B y Mark S. Thomas and Robert W. Shaw The U. S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has affirmed a trial judgment against a class of former employees of Abbott Laboratories ("Abbott"), ruling against their...

Feeder Funds To Pay Nearly $220 Million To Settle Madoff Ponzi Scheme Fraud Claims

NEW YORK - (Mealey's) Four Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC feeder funds and several of their current and former owners and officers have agreed to pay nearly $220 million to settle claims that they breached their fiduciary duties under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act by "recommending...

High Court Considers Whether Participant Must Reimburse Health Plan Under ERISA

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (Mealey's) The Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals erred in ruling that a health plan administrator's claim for reimbursement against a plan participant is subject to equitable limitations, including unjust enrichment, under Employee Retirement Income Security Act Section 502...

Williams Mullen: Retirement Plan Plaintiffs Were Not Required To Exhaust Administrative Remedies Before Filing Their Class Action

By Mark S. Thomas and Robert W. Shaw The Second Circuit has held that a putative class of ERISA plaintiffs was not required to exhaust a plan's administrative remedies prior to filing claims for a redetermination of future retirement benefits and alleged irregularities in plan amendments. Kirkendall...

Supreme Court Says Health Plan Terms Govern ERISA Reimbursement Action Based On Equitable Lien

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (Mealey's) The U.S. Supreme Court on April 16 ruled that a health plan administrator's claim for reimbursement against a plan participant under Employee Retirement Income Security Act Section 502(a)(3) based on an equitable lien by agreement is governed by the terms of the...

Court Dismisses ERISA Case Concerning Investments in Mortgage-Backed Securities

By Mark S. Thomas and Robert W. Shaw The U. S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has affirmed the dismissal of a case brought against Morgan Stanley Investment Management Inc. ("Morgan Stanley") concerning certain investments in mortgage-backed securities that allegedly violated fiduciary...

Williams Mullen: Court’s Award Of $3.8 Million Raises Questions About The Scope Of ERISA Remedies

By Mark S. Thomas and Robert W. Shaw The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit has affirmed an unusually large award of $3.8 million in a case involving the denial of long-term disability benefits. In Rochow v. Life Insurance Company of North America , No. 12-2074 (6th Cir. Dec. 6, 2013) [ enhanced...

Williams Mullen: D.C. Circuit Rules That ‘Exhaustion of Administrative Remedies’ Is Not Required For Violations of ERISA’S Statutory Guarantees: Stephens v. Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation

By Mark S. Thomas and Robert W. Shaw The U. S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit has joined five other federal circuits to rule that pension plan participants need not exhaust a plan’s internal remedial procedures before they file suit in federal court to assert violations...