Labor & Employment Finance & Banking Civil Procedure

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Four Things Companies Should Know About the SEC’s 2015 Whistleblower Report

The SEC recently published data showing significant increases in tips received under its Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Program. Released on November 16, the 2015 annual report also provided important guidance to companies on the...more

Be On The Lookout: New Proposed Claims Procedures For ERISA-Governed Disability Benefits Are Coming

The Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) announced plans to publish, on November 18, 2015, new proposed claims procedures for handling ERISA-governed disability benefits. ...more

Group Life Insurance Claims by a Teacher’s Beneficiary Are Subject to ERISA Preemption: Woods v. American United Life Insurance...

On ERISA preemption grounds, a federal court has ruled against state law claims asserted by the beneficiary of a former school teacher who sought benefits from a group life insurance policy. Woods v. American United Life...more

California Court of Appeal holds certain class action waivers may be unenforceable

Class action waivers have become common in consumer contracts, including sales agreements to purchase newly constructed residences and employment agreements, which may also contain arbitration clauses. After last year’s...more

Kansas Court Dismisses Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Claim for Failure to Complain of Securities Violations

On November 5, 2015, the District of Kansas dismissed a whistleblower retaliation claim under Dodd-Frank, ruling that the statute’s anti-retaliation provision only protects individuals who report securities violations.  Azim...more

CFPB Announces Consent Order with Employment Background Screening Report Providers

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) announcement that it has entered into a consent order with two affiliated companies that generate and provide employment background screening reports serves as a reminder to...more

Gaming the System? ERISA Interference Lawsuit Targets ACA-Driven Reduction of Hours Strategy

In a case believed to be the first of its kind, a recent class action claim has accused an employer of reducing hours of employees to avoid having to provide health coverage as required under the Patient Protection and...more

ERISA: Shutting Down Equitable Relief Claims — Disgorgement Claim Dismissed On Rule 12(c) Motion

You already know that in March 2015, the 6th Circuit issued an en banc decision rejecting disgorgement of profits claims. Rochow v. Life Ins. Co. of N. Am., 780 F.3d 364, 372 (6th Cir. 2015)(en banc) (rejecting $3.8 million...more

ERISA — ATTORNEY FEES: What Happens When The Plan And The Insurer Don’t Agree On The Benefit Denial?

You already know that under ERISA the court has discretion to award attorney fees to a party that has “some success on the merits.”...more

Mark Your Calendar

The day is almost upon us. Halloween, you say? No, oral arguments in the Spokeo case. Way more exciting. Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins is important because it goes to the heart of when a claim for non-compliance can be brought...more

The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - October 2015

Editor's Overview - This month, we review the Second Circuit's ruling in New York State Psychiatric Ass'n, Inc. v. UnitedHealth Grp. wherein the Second Circuit ruled that: (i) a provider association has associational...more

U.S. Supreme Court Rules That Employers Must Periodically Review Investment Options In 401(k) Plans And Remove Imprudent Funds

An employer has fiduciary duties with respect to the 401(k) plan it provides its employees. Those duties include the obligation to choose prudent investment options and to consider the fees associated with service providers...more

Amazon’s motion for summary judgment denied in FCRA class action suit

U.S. District Judge Gary Feinerman denied Amazon, Inc.’s (Amazon) motion for summary judgment on October 7, 2015, in Illinois federal court, in a class action case over alleged violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act...more

Seventh Circuit Rejects In-Network Providers’ Bid For ERISA Claims Procedures

Claims by providers seeking to assert the rights of ERISA plan participants have been percolating in courts throughout the country. The Seventh Circuit has now weighed in, rejecting the notion that providers who have payment...more

Invalidation of Georgia Garnishment Statute – Now What?

On September 8, 2015, a federal district court invalidated a portion of the Georgia post-judgment garnishment statute in Strickland v. Alexander, No. 1:12-CV-02735-MHS (N.D. Ga.). Senior Judge Marvin Shoob found that the...more

Global Private Equity Newsletter - Fall 2015 Edition: Buyer Beware – Court Lowers Hurdle to Make Claim for Withdrawal Liability...

In Tsareff v. ManWeb Services, Inc., the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit held that an asset purchaser’s pre-closing knowledge of a seller’s potential multiemployer plan withdrawal liability could be sufficient...more

The Ninth Circuit Hammers Out A New Successorship Liability Test Under The MPPAA

The Ninth Circuit, in Resilient Floor Covering Pension Trust Fund Board of Trustees v. Michael’s Floor Covering, Inc., Case No. 12-17675 (9th Cir. Sept. 11, 2015), joined the Seventh Circuit in finding that an asset...more

A Review of Recent Whistleblower Developments

Second Circuit Splits from Fifth Circuit on Whistleblower SEC Reporting Obligations On September 10, 2015, the Second Circuit in Berman v. Neo@Ogilvy LLC, 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 16071 (2d Cir. 2015), ruled that...more

Not all Plans can Establish a Shortened Limitations Period for Filing Lawsuit

I recently blogged about a case in which a plan had established a shorter period of time (one year deadline) for filing a lawsuit, rather than relying on the state statute of limitation (six years) which would otherwise have...more

Is Your Severance Policy an ERISA Plan?

Severance plans are generally covered under ERISA, but it is not always easy to distinguish an ERISA-covered severance plan from a non-ERISA severance policy. There are advantages and disadvantages to being an ERISA-covered...more

District Court Denies Class Certification in Excessive Fee Case Against Service Provider

The plaintiffs, three plan participants, filed their lawsuit in 2012 and purported to assert claims on behalf of a class of all plans serviced by the defendants, affiliated entities that provided services to the plans and/or...more

Federal District Court Addresses Measure of Damages in ERISA Breach of Fiduciary Duty Case

Fiduciaries of two defined contribution retirement plans sponsored by the same employer (the “Plans”) sued the Plans’ former investment manager for breach of ERISA fiduciary duties and state law violations in connection with...more

“Highest Contribution Rate” Means Highest of Any CBA for ERISA Withdrawal Liability Payments

The Third Circuit held that where an employer has been party to multiple collective bargaining agreements (“CBAs”) with a multiemployer fund, an employer’s withdrawal liability should be based on “the single highest...more

Payday Lenders’ “Operation Choke Point” Suit Allowed To Proceed

In a June 2014 alert, we discussed Community Financial Services Association vs. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, a payday loan industry suit challenging on various grounds certain supervisory and interpretive statements...more

ERISA – Subrogation: Summary Plan Descriptions Can Be A “Controlling Document” Requiring Reimbursement… Sometimes

You already know that when a Summary Plan Description conflicts with ERISA plan language, the ERISA plan language controls. But what happens when all you have is a Summary Plan Description (SPD), and… no ERISA Plan? Can...more

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