The attorneys at Levin Sitcoff Waneka, PC have extensive experience in ERISA cases and have helped numerous clients achieve successful settlements.
ERISA, or the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, is a federal law that provides protection for individuals who participate in most voluntarily established pension and health insurance plans offered by private industry. ERISA sets minimum standards for these types of plans, requires that the plans have a grievance and appeals process for participants who are denied benefits, and gives participants the right to sue for withheld benefits and breaches of fiduciary duty.
A client of Levin Sitcoff Waneka was injured in a bicycle accident and sustained injuries that kept her from performing her job. Her disability insurer paid her disability benefits for 18 months before determining that she could return to work full time, despite her doctor’s opinion saying she could not work. In a landmark decision, the court held that Levin Sitcoff Waneka could proceed with a bad faith claim as well as an ERISA claim against the insurance company. Levin Sitcoff Waneka took the matter to trial and won a judgment. The insurance company appealed to the Tenth Circuit United States Court of Appeals. That court affirmed the original judgment, and Levin Sitcoff Waneka’s client was able to collect ongoing disability benefits.