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International paper company lawsuit

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Final Approval Granted in Million Settlement of 401(k.

This is the second recent settlement for the firm after CIGNA and Prudential agreed to pay million to settlement excessive fees claims regarding CIGNA’s in-house 401(k) plan.

Cigna was represented by Morgan Lewis & Bockius, LLP and Donovan Rose Nester, PC.

Our Thoughts

It appears that one of my favorite ERISA thought leaders Stephen Rosenberg was correct back in 2009 when he predicted the Hecker v. Deere decision would be a “high water mark for the corporate bar in defending against [excessive fee] claims.” The pendulum clearly is swinging back in the direction of plan participants in light of the recent court decisions and settlements covered on this blog.

What does this mean for the average plan sponsor? On its face, not much as settlements have no precedential value. But the lessons to be learned here are important. Good fiduciary practice means reviewing a case like this and investigating whether any of the allegations are relevant to your own plan.


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