6th Circ. Nixes Retirees' Benefits Claims V. Caterpillar

Law360, New York (January 29, 2009, 12:00 AM EST) -- Heavy equipment maker Caterpillar Inc. has prevailed in its bid to toss claims from a lawsuit brought by retired employees who alleged they and their spouses were owed lifelong free health care benefits from the company.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled Tuesday that the former employees' right to no-cost medical benefits under a 1988 collective bargaining agreement vested only on actual retirement of the employees in question, by which time the CBA had expired.

In remanding the case back to the...
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