News & Analysis as of

Autoimmune diseases and workers’ compensation

Many people in Illinois, and throughout the United States, suffer from autoimmune diseases. According to the American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association, approximately one in five people in the U.S. suffer from an...more

EEOC Sues Employer for Allegedly Coercing Employee to Participate in Wellness Program

Employers continue to struggle to understand the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s position with regard to their wellness programs. While conceding the lawful use of such programs and the benefits achieved in terms of...more

ERISA: Plaintiff’s Attorney Fees Denied — Filing Of Lawsuit Was Not Reason Why Benefits Were Granted

You already know that in ERISA cases a court may, in its discretion, award attorney fees if a party achieved “some degree of success on the merits.”...more

District Court in Fourth Circuit Rejects Extension of Amara-like Remedies to Benefit Cases

The Honorable Martin Reidinger, sitting in the United States District Court for the Western District of North Carolina, declined Plaintiff’s invitation to extend the applicability of Cigna v. Amara, 131 S. Ct. 1866 (2011), to...more

More Disabled Employees But Fewer Employees Covered With Long Term Disability Coverage

Here is a recent news item showing the scope of the employee disability problem. In a nutshell...more

Employment Law - July 2014

Recess Is Over: Supreme Court Strikes NLRB Appointments - Why it matters: Striking a blow to the President and the National Labor Relations Board, the U.S. Supreme Court held that three recess appointments made by...more

Executive Briefing - May 2014

In This Issue: - ADA Reasonable Accommodation Requests: Avoid Rigid Policies and Consider Technology - IRS Issues Guidance on Qualified Plan Amendments Regarding Same Sex Spouses - OSHA to Refer Untimely...more

Proving eligibility for workers’ comp benefits

Any number of incidents, including falls, auto accidents, machine entanglements and repetitive motion, can contribute to employees in Illinois, and throughout the U.S., suffering a serious injury or illness in the workplace. ...more

New Rule Allows Disability Insurance Premiums To Be Paid From Qualified Plan Accounts - Employers Will Be Able To Offer Employees...

HIGHLIGHTS - - The Treasury Department and the IRS released final regulations regarding amounts used by a qualified plan to pay for accident or health insurance premiums. Under the regulations, there is one notable...more

11th Circuit Court of Appeals Mandates Proactive Gathering and Review of SSA Information in LTD Benefit Review

Not long ago, the Unites States Supreme Court in MetLife v. Glenn, 128 S. Ct. 2343 (2008) gave a stern warning to plan fiduciaries who required a claimant to apply for disability benefits with the Social Security...more

Employers Should Determine The Reasonableness Of Their Benefit Plans' Limitations Period Based On A Recent U.S. Supreme Court...

In Heimeshoff v. Hartford Life & Accident Insurance Co., the Supreme Court recently upheld a plan-imposed limitations period on a participant’s right to file suit for benefits so long as that period is not unreasonably short...more

U.S. Supreme Court Holds that ERISA Plan Can Enforce Contractual Limitations Provision to Bar Benefit Claim Lawsuit

The U.S. Supreme Court in Heimeshoff v. Hartford Life & Accident Insurance Co. et al. resolved a split among the circuits when it held that a contractual limitations clause in an ERISA-governed long-term disability benefits...more

Sixth Circuit Rejects Claim for Reinstatement of Erroneous Benefit Payments to Ineligible Retiree

In Adams v. General Motors Company (Case No. 12-2084), the Sixth Circuit rejected an ineligible retiree’s claim for reinstatement of erroneous benefit payments under her former employer’s pension plan. The retiree received...more

ERISA — 4th Circuit: Clearer Language Now Needed to Confer Discretion

What language is needed in the ERISA plan to confer discretion? The bar was just raised in the 4th Circuit. Here’s the case of Cosey v. Prudential Insurance Company of America, [PDF] __F.3d__ (November 12,...more

SDNY Refuses to Find Exceptions to the Firestone Deference Rule

In Wedge v. Shawmut Design & Construction Group Long Term Disability Ins. Plan, No. 12 Civ. 5645 (KPF) (S.D.N.Y. Sept. 10, 2013), the court declined to recognize an exception to the rule established in Firestone Tire & Rubber...more

Employment Law -- Sep 12, 2013

Federal Agencies Respond to Supreme Court’s DOMA Ruling - In the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to strike down part of the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”), federal agencies are starting to respond with new...more

Rhode Island Laws Extend Paid Benefits to Caregivers

On July 11, 2013, the Governor of Rhode Island signed a new bill into law which will expand the state's temporary disability insurance program to provide wage replacement benefits to workers who take time off to care for a...more

Converted Individual Disability Policies Governed by ERISA?

You already know that an individual disability policy may nevertheless be governed by ERISA, even when the employee pays her own premium. This can occur when the employees benefit from a rate structure or premium discount...more

ERISA Legal News - 1st Quarter, 2013 • Volume 4, Number 1

In This Issue: - Supreme Court Update: Where Plan Reimbursement Or Recovery Terms Are Ambiguous Or Silent,Equitable Doctrines May Fill The Gaps: US Airways, Inc. v. McCutchen, 569 U.S. ___ (2013). In an...more

Municipal Pensions II: Do Survivors' Pensions Increase Whenever the Salary For the Position Does?

Our previews of the new civil cases granted review at the end of the Illinois Supreme Court’s November term continue with Hooker v. Retirement Fund of the Firemen's Annuity and Benefit Fund of Chicago,. Hooker poses the...more

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