Understanding Employee Benefits

Owner/Trustee of 401(k) Plan Accused of Having Eyes Wide Shut on Fiduciary Duties

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Last June I blogged about the trend of participant fee class actions moving down to smaller 401(k) Plans. http://benefitsnotes.com/2016/06/inside-trustees-for-small-minnesota-401k-plan-face-class-action-over-excessive-fees/ Occasionally, class actions are brought based on other breaches of fiduciary duties, particularly those involving significant drops in value of concentrated Plan investments such as employer stock referred to as “Stock... Read More

Topics: ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Fiduciary Guidance, Retirement Plans, Uncategorized

Employers Who Self Administer Life Insurance Plans Had Better Do So Correctly

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Many employers self-administer welfare benefit plans such as life insurance or disability insurance plans. This self administration requires the employer to determine eligibility for coverage, remit proper premiums and notify the insurance carrier about changes in coverage. The insurance carrier often does not even know the names of the covered... Read More

Topics: ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Uncategorized, Welfare Plans

Inside Trustees for Small Minnesota 401(k) Plan Face Class Action Over Excessive Fees

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A Minneapolis law firm recently filed a class action complaint against Lamettry’s Collision, Inc. and the Trustees of its 401(k) Plan, CFO Stephen Daniel and President Joan Lamettry for various breaches of fiduciary duty with respect to fees charged to Plan participants’ accounts in the Company’s 401(k) Plan. Specific allegations... Read More

Topics: ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Fiduciary Guidance, Retirement Plans

What You Say in Your SPD About Claims Processing Makes a Difference

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Employers who self fund their medical plans often have contracts with their third party administrators about claims processing. Some of those contracts provide that the claims processor has discretion to decide claims; others provide that the claims processor is simply acting in a ministerial fashion so that the employer ultimately... Read More

Topics: ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Health Plan

Time to Review Plan Subrogation Procedures

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Most self-funded ERISA medical plans provide that participants who have been injured by other people (think car accidents) must reimburse the plan if the participant recovers from the other person for those injuries. In order to obtain that reimbursement, a plan document must contain appropriate reimbursement/subrogation language and the plan... Read More

Topics: ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Health Plan, Welfare Plans

Federal Court Determines that Employer Use of Employee Health Insurance Premium Payments Breach of ERISA Fiduciary Duties

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On November 9, 2015, Minnesota Federal District Judge Susan Richard Nelson ruled that the president and CEO of Faribault Woolen Mills Company breached his fiduciary duties under ERISA by diverting Employee health insurance premiums toward corporate and personal use. The lawsuit was brought by the U.S. Department of Labor. Facts:... Read More

Topics: ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Fiduciary Guidance, Health Plan, Payroll, Welfare Plans