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Lindsey H. ChopinBlog Posts

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U.S. Supreme Court: Courts Can Review Railroad Retirement Board’s Refusal to Reopen Claims

In a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that federal courts can review decisions by the U.S. Railroad Retirement Board denying claimants’ requests to reopen prior benefits denials. Salinas v. U.S. R.R. Ret. Bd., No. 19-199 (Feb. 3, 2021). Justice Sonia Sotomayor, writing for the majority, explained the relevant provision of the Railroad...… Continue Reading
February 7, 2021

U.S. Supreme Court: State Law Regulating Pharmacy Benefit Managers is Not Preempted by ERISA

An Arkansas law regulating pharmacy benefit managers’ (PBMs) generic drug reimbursement rates, and affecting the cost of prescription drugs provided under ERISA-governed benefit plans and the administration of those plans, is not preempted by ERISA, the U.S. Supreme Court has held unanimously. Rutledge v. Pharmaceutical Care Management Association, No. 18-540, 2020 U.S. LEXIS 5988 (Dec. 10,...… Continue Reading
December 14, 2020

U.S. Supreme Court to Take on Affordable Care Act … Again

This term, the U.S. Supreme Court returns to a challenge to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). In the consolidated cases of California v. Texas (No. 19-840) and Texas v. California (No. 19-1019), the Court will consider whether a group of states and private individuals have standing to challenge the ACA. If that procedural hurdle is cleared, the Court...… Continue Reading
November 8, 2020

Supreme Court to Consider Appealability of Railroad Retirement Board Decisions

The U.S. Supreme Court will hear the second of several ERISA disputes this term, the first issue we discussed as the term began, October 5, 2020.  Monday, November 2, 2020, the Justices will consider whether the Railroad Retirement Board’s denial of a claimant’s request to open a prior benefits decision is a “final decision” reviewable...… Continue Reading
November 1, 2020

U.S. Supreme Court to Hear the First of Several ERISA Disputes This Term

The Supreme Court, whose new term begins today, the first Monday in October, will consider a number of cases impacting employee benefits and benefits litigation.  This is the first in a series analyzing these cases as they are heard by the Court.  The first issue up concerns prescription drug benefit regulation, and later in the...… Continue Reading
October 5, 2020

Plan Defends Valuation of Accounts in Midst of COVID-Related Market Volatility

A 401(k) plan and its administrators are defending the administrator’s decision to require a special valuation of former employees’ account values, given extraordinary market changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Under the terms of the plan at issue, when a former employee seeks a distribution of his or her plan account, the account is typically...… Continue Reading
August 12, 2020

Plan Defends Valuation of Accounts in Midst of COVID-Related Market Volatility

A 401(k) plan and its administrators are defending the administrator’s decision to require a special valuation of former employees’ account values, given extraordinary market changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Under the terms of the plan at issue, when a former employee seeks a distribution of his or her plan account, the account is typically... Continue Reading…
August 12, 2020

Eighth Circuit Affirms in Part, Reverses in Part University’s Early Win in ERISA Fee Suit

As the circuit courts continue to define the pleading standards for fiduciary breach claims challenging investments in defined contribution plans, the Eighth Circuit affirmed in part and reversed in part a district court’s finding that a group of 403(b) plan participants failed to state such a claim.  In Davis v Washington University, plaintiffs alleged that...… Continue Reading
June 8, 2020