Archive for the ‘ERISA’ Category

In ERISA Cases, The Standard Of Review Really Does Matter

Litigation pursuant to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (“ERISA”) is rather unique.  Unlike most cases, ERISA disputes are based on a limited scope of permissible evidence.  The range of that scope is ultimately dependent on which standard of review is employed by the courts.  Typically, when the standard of review is abuse of discretion, […]

Daily Journal Article – In ERISA Cases, The Standard of Review Really Does Matter

The Daily Journal recently published an article authored by M. Scott Koller entitled, “In ERISA Cases, The Standard of Review Really Does Matter.” Originally Published by The Daily Journal on December 2, 2010.

Under ERISA , Procedural Deficiencies Not Considered When the Standard of Review is De Novo

Litigation pursuant to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (“ERISA”) is rather unique.  Unlike most cases, ERISA disputes are based on a limited scope of permissible evidence.  The range of that scope is ultimately dependent on which standard of review is employed by the courts.  Typically, when the standard of review is abuse of discretion, […]

Effect of Metlife v. Glenn on Discovery In the Ninth Circuit

Discovery under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (“ERISA”) is distinctly different from normal litigation.  Since one of the goals of ERISA is to resolve disputes inexpensively and expeditiously, discovery is typically limited to the administrative record.  Boyd v. Bert Bell/Pete Rozelle NFL Players Ret. Plan, 410 F.3d 1173, 1178 (9th Cir. 2005).  However, the […]

District Court Provides Additional Guidance on Scope of Discovery Under Glenn

In the last several years, the scope of discovery in ERISA cases has been a point of contention between plaintiff and defense counsel.  Plaintiffs typically want free range to conduct discovery on any potentially relevant information addressing the conflict of interest issue while defense counsel would like discovery requests to be as narrow as possible.  Generally, […]

Submission of the Claim File: Seal or Redact?

For most insurance litigation, the majority of the evidence used by both sides comes from the claim file, also known as the administrative record in ERISA cases.  The claim file represents the insurance carrier’s written record of its handling and processing of an insurance claim.  Obviously, this information is highly relevant whenever coverage or a […]

Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Applies Montour To The Conflict of Interest Analysis

In the aftermath of the United States Supreme Court holding in Metropolitan Life Ins. Co. v. Glenn, __ U.S. __, 128 S.Ct. 2343, 2348 (2008), the courts have struggled to apply this holding.  The Ninth Circuit did so in Montour v. Hartford Life & Accid. Ins. Co., 582 F.3d 933 (9th Cir. 2009).  In turn, […]

ERISA-Governed Health Plan Excluding Coverage for Non-Contracted Providers Held to be Unambiguous

In Dupree v. Holman Prof’l. Counseling Ctrs., ___ F.3d ___, 2009 WL 2245219 (9th Cir. July 29, 2009), the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held that an ERISA-governed health plan, which repeatedly asserted that non-contracted services were generally not covered, unambiguously excluded coverage of non-emergency treatment at a non-contracted residential treatment center. In doing so, […]

No Special Treatment For “Top Hat” ERISA Plans In The Ninth Circuit

In Sznewajs v. U.S. Bancorp Amended and Restated Supplemental Benefits Plan, ___ F.3d ___, 2009 WL 2004452 (9th Cir. July 13, 2009), the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals addressed, for the first time, whether the standard of review analysis for “top hat” ERISA plans is the same as for other ERISA plans. Franciene Sznewajs, the […]

ACI Conference on Litigating Disability Insurance Claims

12th National Advanced Forum on Litigating Disability Insurance Claims took place on June 15-16, 2009 at the Hyatt Regency in Boston Massachusetts. Attached is a copy of the conference paper authored by M. Scott Koller and Robert McKennon titled: Disability / ERISA Litigation Insurance Law Update for 2009. Download Conference Paper Here

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