The Second Circuit determined that a district court erred when it denied an attorney fee award to an ERISA plaintiff who had sought benefits from a plan. In so ruling, the Second Circuit first concluded the district court incorrectly determined that the plaintiff had not achieved “some success”—a threshold requirement for an ERISA fee award—because … Continue Reading
The Ninth Circuit ruled that a district court erred by failing to consider the entire course of the litigation when analyzing a request for attorney’s fees under ERISA and remanded the case for a calculation of fees. A plan participant filed suit against a plan and insurer seeking disability benefits. The plan, in turn, filed a cross-claim against … Continue Reading
The Fifth Circuit upheld the reimbursement and subrogation terms found in a welfare benefit plan’s one-page SPD that also served as the plan document. Plaintiff, a plan beneficiary, received $71,644.77 from the plan to cover medical expenses incurred as a result of injuries sustained during a laparoscopic exam. Plaintiff’s injuries were allegedly the result of medical … Continue Reading
The court in Tussey v. ABB Inc., No. 2:06-cv-04305 (W.D. Mo. Dec. 9, 2015), a long-running suit alleging that ABB failed to monitor recordkeeping fees and improperly mapped participants’ investments (previously reported on here), awarded class counsel $11.7 million in attorneys’ fees and affirmed its earlier award of $2.28 million in costs and class representative … Continue Reading
The Third Circuit recently held that a plaintiff was not entitled to a monetary, equitable remedy under ERISA § 502(a)(3) where he failed to prove actual harm. Perelman v. Perelman, Nos. 14–1663, 14–2742, 2015 WL 4174537 (3d Cir. 2015). … Continue Reading
The Third Circuit held that the catalyst theory of recovery applies to ERISA cases when determining whether to award attorneys’ fees. In this case, Plaintiffs (two individuals and two pharmacies) filed suit against Defendant insurance companies for denial of benefits under ERISA. After their motion to dismiss was denied, Defendants paid the claims in full. … Continue Reading
The Second Circuit recently had occasion to provide guidance to the lower courts on the standard for evaluating an ERISA attorneys’ fee application following the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Hardt v. Reliance Standard Life Ins. Co., 560 U.S. 242 (2010). As previously reported, in Hardt, the Supreme Court observed that ERISA’s fee shifting provision … Continue Reading
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