Conflicting orders on motions to dismiss from two California courts foreshadow issues for a new theory of ERISA liability. Employers have faced a recent wave of novel ERISA class actions that challenge the reallocation of defined contribution plan forfeitures.  Such plans often include provisions requiring participants to work for the employer for a defined period

A California federal court recently granted an employer win in an ERISA excessive fee case when it dismissed a proposed class action brought by an ex-employee of Schenker, Inc., a transportation logistics company.  Partida v. Schenker Inc., No. 22-cv-09192-AMO, 2024 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 58297 (N.D. Cal. Mar. 29, 2024).  In the past few years

The Fourth Circuit affirmed Aon Hewitt Investment Consulting’s trial victory in a 250,000-member class action suit alleging that Aon breached ERISA’s fiduciary duties.

Aon was initially the Lowe’s 401(k) plan’s investment advisor and later was engaged as the plan’s 3(38) delegated fiduciary. The plaintiffs’ fiduciary breach claims alleged that, after being retained as a delegated

An ERISA action alleging breaches of fiduciary duty recently cleared the pleadings stage in Minnesota district court, narrowly avoiding a complete dismissal. See Schave v. CentraCare Health Sys., No. 22-cv-1555 (WMW/LIB), 2023 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 13786 (D. Minn. Jan. 27, 2023).

In Schave, a CentraCare employee challenged the healthcare provider’s handling of its

A New York district court recently summarily dismissed, with prejudice, a 401(k) plan participant’s putative class action complaint alleging breaches of fiduciary duty.  Falberg v. Goldman Sachs Grp., Inc., No. 19-cv-9910, 2022 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 167064 (S.D.N.Y. Sep. 14, 2022).  The Plaintiff alleged that the Plan fiduciary-Defendants breached their duties of prudence and loyalty

Plaintiffs must plead a “sound basis for comparison—a meaningful benchmark” — to sustain their claims of imprudent investment and excessive fee against a 401(k) plan, the federal appeals court in St. Louis has held, dismissing a class action lawsuit for breached of fiduciary duties under ERISA. Matousek v. MidAmerican Energy Co.No. 21-2749 (8th

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit recently affirmed a District Court’s finding that Principal Life Insurance Company (“Principal”) did not breach its fiduciary duties regarding its stable value contract for 401(k) plans.  Rozo v. Principal Life Ins. Co., No. 21-2026, 2022 U.S. App. LEXIS 24803 (8th Cir. Sept. 2, 2022).

In

Since the Supreme Court’s January ruling in Hughes v. Northwestern University, circuit courts throughout the country have issued varying rulings regarding 401(k) fee litigation cases. These include the Ninth Circuit in Trader Joe’s Co. and Salesforce.com, Inc., and the Sixth Circuit in CommonSpirit Health, Inc. and TriHealth, Inc.  Most recently, the Seventh Circuit

On June 21, 2022, CommonSpirit Health defeated a putative class action brought by former employees who alleged that the company mismanaged their 401(k) plan by offering higher-cost, actively managed investment options when lower-cost index funds with better returns were available. The plaintiffs also alleged that the plan’s recordkeeping and investment management fees were excessive when

A New York district court recently dismissed, without prejudice, a 401(k) plan participant’s putative class action complaint alleging breaches of fiduciary duty. The plaintiff alleged that the plan fiduciary-defendants breached their duties of prudence and loyalty by failing to properly monitor the plan’s costs. Cunningham v. USI Ins. Servs., LLC, 2022 U.S. Dist. LEXIS