by Seth Safra and Jonathan Goldberg

A recent appellate court decision, Cottillion v. United Refining Co. et al. (3d Cir. Mar. 18, 2015), is a good reminder of the high cost that a drafting error can have for a plan’s sponsor.  Although courts have recognized a “scrivener’s error” doctrine, the bar for establishing a scrivener’s error is high and the outcome can be unpredictable.  The Cottillion case illustrates that the sponsor’s intent will not always win the day–even where the outcome does not make sense economically.
Continue Reading Recent Case Illustrates Importance of Careful Plan Drafting

When an employee benefit plan is amended in a way an employer anticipates could be controversial, an employer might seek a declaratory judgment that the amendment complies with ERISA.  Generally, a declaratory judgment action will preclude later challenges by plan participants.  However, a recent decision by the Third Circuit demonstrates that the presumption in favor