For More Information
Employee benefit plans constitute the largest sources of equity capital and undisclosed corporate liabilities in the world. Sophisticated plaintiffs' class action lawyers are targeting plans, their employer sponsors, and their fiduciaries in ambitious lawsuits at an accelerating clip. Multimillion-dollar judgments and settlements are repeatedly reported in newspapers and the legal press, and lawsuits over pension and 401(k) plans, long term disability and severance benefits, and medical cutbacks have become an unfortunate reality for both public and privately held corporations. Our ERISA Litigation Practice defends against these suits by combining substantive knowledge of employee benefits law (and the overlapping fields of labor, employment, securities, health care, and insurance law) with the talents of skilled class action litigators and trial lawyers. We practice extensively on behalf of plan sponsors, fiduciaries, and service providers.
Our ERISA Litigation Practice handles all types of benefit disputes, from individual claims for long term disability, severance, medical, and death benefits, to Taft-Hartley deadlock arbitrations, to the most complex, high-exposure class action claims. Morgan Lewis is counsel of record in more cases alleging breaches of fiduciary duty in connection with fees and expenses charged to 401(k) plan participants than any other law firm.
Morgan Lewis's ERISA Litigation Practice features more than 50 seasoned professionals across the country; attorneys in four of these cities were recognized in Chambers USA 2010 as among the best in the business. Our ERISA Litigation Practice coordinates and deploys attorneys to defend cases on a national basis. Our unmatched depth enables us to defend and staff the largest, most complex cases with the required talent. It also permits us to bring the combined knowledge base of the largest practice of its type to bear on finding the best, most economical solutions to our clients' problems. If there is any law firm that can deal successfully with your ERISA matter, it is Morgan Lewis.
We have had tremendous courtroom success. Our ERISA Litigation Practice counsels clients and litigates cases across a broad spectrum of industries, including financial services, insurance, retail, technology, telecommunications, ocean transportation, aviation, and manufacturing. We are familiar with fiduciary liability insurance policies and the carriers' practices, having worked with all of the carriers, and as approved panel counsel for the major carriers.
Our recent courtroom accomplishments include:
- Trial of the first major 401(k) "stock drop" class action (defense verdict)
- Dismissal of class claim that cash-balance plan violated anti-cutback rules
- Trial of modification of retiree medical benefit plan
- Defense of class action "interference with benefits" challenge to policy terminating medical benefits of long term disability employees after exhaustion of ADA interactive process
- Appellate court ruling of first impression that 401(k) savings plan fiduciary breach employer "stock drop" claims can be dismissed on a motion to dismiss
- Dismissal of claims of contingent worker class for participation in benefit plans
- Dismissal of class action claims concerning alleged unlawful failures to disclose "revenue sharing" and permitting excessive fees with respect to mutual fund investment offerings of 401(k) defined contribution retirement plans
- Appellate court ruling of first impression that "fiduciary exception" to attorney-client privilege may not apply outside context of common law trustees