Benefits

  • January 21, 2021

    Acadia's 'Quality Care' Claim For Jury To Decide, Judge Says

    Behavioral health care provider Acadia Healthcare Co. Inc. and three of its current and former executives must continue to face a proposed securities class action alleging they misled investors after trading prices for the company's stock sank amid reports about understaffing and other issues at its facilities, a federal judge in Nashville said Wednesday.

  • January 21, 2021

    Auto Parts Co. Wants $1B ERISA Suit Axed After Colo. Ruling

    A Michigan federal judge should follow a Colorado court's lead and toss a proposed 401(k) class action against Magna after the auto parts supplier's employees accused it of including too-expensive investment options into their $1 billion retirement plan, the company said.

  • January 21, 2021

    Uber Settles Benefits Suit With Driver Who Was Shot In Head

    A former Uber Technologies Inc. driver who was shot multiple times while picking up a rider has settled a lawsuit against the company that had sought $1 million, disability pay and other employee benefits, according to a filing Wednesday.

  • January 20, 2021

    Uber And Postmates Fight Calif.'s Bid To Nix AB 5 Challenge

    Uber, Postmates and drivers for the app companies have urged a California federal judge to uphold their challenge to the state's Assembly bills 5 and 2257, arguing that their latest complaint successfully shows that the two worker classification laws improperly deprive gig workers of their rights.

  • January 20, 2021

    Biden DOL May Ax Socially Conscious 401(k) Investing Hurdle

    The Biden administration is considering rolling back a Trump administration rule that made it harder for pension plans and 401(k) plans to push workers' savings toward socially conscious investments, the White House indicated Wednesday in an executive order.

  • January 20, 2021

    Mercedes Dropped Ball On Monitoring 401(k) Costs, Suit Says

    Mercedes-Benz allowed its U.S. employees' 401(k) plan to be overcharged for record-keeping and advisory services, depriving the plan's participants from accumulating larger balances in their retirement accounts, a proposed class action against the carmaker in Alabama federal court has alleged.

  • January 20, 2021

    Takeda Pharmaceuticals Sued Over $1.8B Retirement Plan

    Three former Takeda Pharmaceuticals workers have hit the company with a proposed ERISA class action in Massachusetts federal court, accusing the company of including massively underperforming investment funds in its $1.8 billion employee retirement plan.

  • January 20, 2021

    Mylan Wants Out Of Investor Suit Over FDA Inspections

    Pharmaceutical company Mylan NV told a Pennsylvania federal judge Tuesday he should toss a proposed class action alleging securities fraud because the company made "unvarnished disclosures" about its quality assurance and compliance with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's regulations.

  • January 20, 2021

    Workers Ask 7th Circ. To Keep ERISA Suit In Court

    A proposed class of current and former Triad Manufacturing Inc. employees urged the Seventh Circuit to keep their ERISA suit in the courthouse, saying an Illinois federal judge correctly ruled that companies can't compel individual arbitration of class actions alleging benefit plan mismanagement.

  • January 19, 2021

    Feds Near Win In Mass. ACA Birth Control Coverage Suit

    A Massachusetts federal judge has ruled that the state can't block a pair of Trump administration rules expanding the religious exemption to the Affordable Care Act's contraceptive mandate, finding that the exemptions don't run afoul of the U.S. Constitution or federal statutes in light of the high court's recent Little Sisters ruling.

  • January 19, 2021

    Willis Towers Watson To Settle Merger Claims For $90M

    Investors in financial services firm Towers Watson & Co. asked a Virginia federal judge Friday to grant initial approval to a $90 million settlement deal that would end federal and Delaware Chancery lawsuits over the company's 2016 merger with risk adviser and insurance brokerage Willis Group Holdings.

  • January 19, 2021

    Lead Plaintiff In Endo Investors' Suit Slams Other Bids

    A retirement fund leading a proposed class action accusing drugmaker Endo International of artificially inflating its stock price is fighting to remain as the lead plaintiff and urged a Pennsylvania federal judge Monday to reject competing bids to replace the fund.

  • January 19, 2021

    DOL Names 5 New ERISA Advisory Council Members

    The U.S. Department of Labor on Tuesday appointed five benefits experts with nearly 150 combined years of experience to the 2021 Advisory Council on Employee Welfare and Pension Benefit Plans, the agency said.

  • January 19, 2021

    Coronavirus Regulations: A State-By-State Week In Review

    The COVID-19 vaccination effort led to milestones over the past week in states including Florida and Texas, which became the first in the nation to administer its millionth dose, and prompted New York to call on Pfizer for direct purchase access so the state can meet increased demand due to expanded eligibility.

  • January 19, 2021

    Architecture Co.'s Execs Seek To Escape DOL Stock-Plan Suit

    The administrators of an architectural firm's employee stock ownership plan have asked a Hawaii federal judge for a win in a U.S. Department of Labor suit alleging the executives inflated the firm's revenue projections when its stock was appraised, saying they fulfilled their obligations to the plan.

  • January 19, 2021

    Teamsters Launch Push For Pension Relief, Labor Reforms

    The Teamsters on Tuesday launched a public policy campaign that will press Congress and the incoming Biden administration to pass legislation to avert a forecast pension crisis, strengthen unions and swiftly adopt federal rules for protecting workers from COVID-19.

  • January 19, 2021

    American Airlines Pilots Push 2nd Circ. To Restore Benefits

    A group of American Airlines pilots on Tuesday asked the Second Circuit to revive their claims that union failures and employer collusion cost them seniority benefits in the wake of the airline's 2011 bankruptcy.

  • January 15, 2021

    Miss. Businessman Gets 18 Years For $288M Tricare Fraud

    A Mississippi man was sentenced Friday to 18 years in prison by a federal judge for his role in a $287.6 million scheme to defraud the Tricare health benefit program by paying doctors and drug distributors kickbacks.

  • January 15, 2021

    Investors Say Grubhub Stock Claims Not 'Fraud By Hindsight'

    Grubhub investors urged an Illinois federal judge Friday not to toss out their securities fraud suit claiming the company lied about its ability to attract high-quality diners, arguing their complaint lays out a legal theory "far from 'fraud by hindsight.'"

  • January 15, 2021

    Calif. Unemployment Recipients Sue Bank Of America

    A California unemployment insurance recipient on Thursday filed a proposed class action against Bank of America NA in San Francisco federal court, accusing the bank — the Golden State's partner in unemployment benefits administration amid the pandemic-linked economic downturn — of failing to protect benefits recipients from fraudsters.

  • January 15, 2021

    Pandemic Again Delays Fired King & Spalding Atty's Trial

    King & Spalding LLP and a lawyer who said he was unlawfully fired for raising ethics concerns will have to wait until at least June to square off at trial, after concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic led a New York federal judge to scuttle plans to push forward in April.

  • January 15, 2021

    Penn Agrees To Shell Out $13M To End ERISA Suit

    The University of Pennsylvania will pay $13 million to end a proposed class action accusing it of mismanaging its employee retirement plans, becoming the eighth elite university in recent years to settle claims that it violated the Employee Retirement Income Security Act.

  • January 15, 2021

    3 Benefits Takeaways From New Surprise Medical Billing Law

    A new federal law clamping down on surprise medical billing will likely trigger a short-term increase in employers' compliance spending, a long-term decrease in patients' out-of-pocket medical costs and an as-yet-unknown impact on employee health plans' overall price tag, experts say.

  • January 14, 2021

    Ex-Auto Part Co. CEO Nabs Bench Trial Win In Severance Suit

    A Tennessee federal judge has ruled that auto parts maker The PendaForm Co. breached its former CEO's contract by failing to pay him severance after his firing for comments made after the company was sold, saying a non-solicitation clause in his contract was unenforceable.

  • January 14, 2021

    Attys Want $4.2M Fee Award For UnitedHealth ERISA Case

    Attorneys representing medical providers in an ERISA suit against UnitedHealth asked a New Jersey federal judge for $4.2 million for the work they did securing a class action deal that made it easier to contest the health insurer's decisions on overpayments of medical claims.

Expert Analysis

  • A Benefits Attorney's Role In Corporate Transactions: Part 2

    Excerpt from Practical Guidance
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    In the context of a corporate transaction, employee benefits and compensation attorneys may need to consider the treatment of benefit plans, integration issues, the purchase agreement and agreements that extend beyond the closing, says Michelle Capezza at Epstein Becker.

  • A Benefits Attorney's Role In Corporate Transactions: Part 1

    Excerpt from Practical Guidance
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    Employee benefits and executive compensation attorneys must consider a spate of issues in the context of a corporate transaction, including the due diligence process and identification of plan-related liabilities, says Michelle Capezza at Epstein Becker.

  • ABA Approves Remote Practice, But Questions Remain

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    Lawyers working remotely during the pandemic while physically outside the jurisdictions in which they are licensed will find some comfort in a recent American Bar Association opinion sanctioning such practice, but there is ambiguity regarding the contours of what's allowed, say attorneys at Harris Wiltshire.

  • What DOL Worker Classification Rule Means For Employers

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    The U.S. Department of Labor's final rule on the classification of independent contractors is substantially the same as the draft proposed in September, however it adds significant clarification for two of the factors used in making the classification determination, says Roxanne Wilson at Arent Fox.

  • Keys To Creating Standout Law Firm Thought Leadership

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    Whether geared toward a global audience or a particular client, a law firm's articles, blog posts and client alerts should strive to be original by harnessing a few editorial tools and following the right distribution sequence, say Steven Andersen and Tal Donahue at Infinite Global.

  • Perspectives

    Judges On Race: The Power Of Discretion In Criminal Justice

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    Judges should take into consideration the several points of law enforcement and prosecutorial discretion — from traffic stops to charging decisions and sentencing recommendations — that often lead to race-based disparate treatment before a criminal defendant even reaches the courthouse, say Judge Juan Villaseñor and Laurel Quinto at Colorado's Eighth Judicial District Court.

  • 5 Attorney Business Development Tips For The New Year

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    Lawyers should remember that the basics of interpersonal relationships have not changed despite the completely virtual environment caused by the pandemic, and should leverage the new year as an excuse to connect with clients in several ways, say Megan Senese and Courtney Hudson at Pillsbury.

  • ERISA Exhaustion Defense Still Viable In Some Jurisdictions

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    A Georgia federal court’s recent decision in Fleming v. Rollins is a reminder that despite an ongoing circuit split, administrators facing fiduciary breach claims under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act can, in certain courts, still assert defenses based on plaintiffs' failure to exhaust a plan's administrative remedies, says Art Marrapese at Barclay Damon.

  • New Laws Will Keep Calif. Employers On Their Toes In 2021

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    California employers should start 2021 by updating their handbooks, preparing additional training and updating necessary procedures as they face a growing number of regulations around COVID-19 and workplace protection, says Mellissa Shafer at Hinshaw & Culbertson.

  • Minimizing Disruption To Clients During Law Firm IT Upgrades

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    For law firms planning overhauls in their information technology infrastructures in light of hard lessons learned from pandemic-era transition to remote work, there are five ways to ensure even the biggest tech upgrade has minimal impact on client service, says Brad Paubel at Lexicon.

  • Disability Benefits Turn On Symptoms Over Diagnosis

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    In disability benefits litigation, medical symptoms are more important than the reasons behind them, as illustrated by a California federal court's recent ruling in Myers v. Aetna, says Mark DeBofsky at DeBofsky Sherman.

  • Bribery Trial Highlights SEC's Focus On Gift Violations

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    In this brief video, Peter Chan and Karl Egbert at Baker McKenzie, and Suzan Rose at the Alternative Investment Management Association, discuss the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's recent trial victory in SEC v. Paulsen, a case that illustrates the agency's increasing focus on gift and entertainment expense compliance for asset managers.

  • Tips For Drafting Effective Amicus Briefs

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    Careful construction of an amicus brief's essential elements — including the table of contents, which determines whether a brief gets studied or skimmed — and the order in which they are crafted are key to maximizing a party's hoped-for impact on a case before the U.S. Supreme Court or other appellate courts, say Mark Chopko and Karl Myers at Stradley Ronon.

  • Benefits-Plan Sponsors Face A Tough Year On Compliance

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    This year, sponsors of benefits plans will need to address ever-changing rules related to fiduciary duties, defined contribution retirement savings plans, and new reporting and disclosure requirements — not to mention, work and legislative issues around the COVID-19 pandemic, says Ivelisse Berio LeBeau at The Wagner Law Group.

  • 5 Trends That Will Influence E-Discovery In 2021

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    Changes in the way people work and communicate — which the pandemic has accelerated — will continue to bring new e-discovery challenges and shifts in data recovery this year, says Brian Schrader at Business Intelligence Associates.

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