Insurers Can Be Sued Directly Under ERISA: 9th Circ.

Law360, New York (June 22, 2011, 6:49 PM EDT) -- An en banc panel of the Ninth Circuit ruled Wednesday that insurers — not just plan administrators — can be sued for retiree benefits under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act.

Reversing its past rulings on the issue, the appeals court said there was no legal basis in the statute or U.S. Supreme Court precedent to stop aggrieved retirees from going after the insurers that often bankroll company-run retirement plans.

“We overrule our previous decisions to the contrary,” the Ninth Circuit said. “An entity other than...
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