Webinars & Seminars

ACI Premier Forum on Defending and Managing ERISA Litigation (New York City)

Shareholder and ERISA litigator Mark D. Spencer will be a featured guest panelist at the 2009 American Conference Institute’s Forum on Defending and Managing ERISA Litigation.  This premier two-day event is devoted entirely to the defense of ERISA claims and features a faculty consisting of in-house counsel, federal judges, and the nation’s top outside counsel defense litigators and firms. 

The volume of complex ERISA litigation cases has greatly increased in recent years, and the stakes for defendants are exceptionally high. There are huge variations in the types of cases that arise under ERISA, as well as substantive differences involved in defending against the various claims. The best plaintiff attorneys are getting into these cases because, among other things, they can recover attorney fees. As a result, the defense bar is seeing more and more class actions, with the top ten settlements for ERISA-related class action cases topping $17 billion in 2008.

Mark’s panel presentation will focus on "Service Provider Relationships: Defending and Managing Litigation that Arises Between Plans and Providers."  Specific topics include:

  • From the start, having a clear understanding of who the defense players are – Plan, Plan Administrator, Claims Administrator, and whether discretion has been delegated to third parties
  • The unique issues that arise in connection with the provision of services to employee benefit plans
  • Assessing fiduciary status of third-party service providers: litigating cases involving retention, monitoring, and termination of providers of service to employee benefit plans
  • Countering claims involving fiduciary duties in selection and monitoring service providers
  • Defending litigation between plans/plan sponsors and service providers, including cases concerning the fiduciary status of providers
  • Determining whether claims that service providers received secret or excess fees state a breach of fiduciary duty claim under ERISA
  • TPAs:  issues surrounding third-party administrators and getting information from third-party service providers; conflicts of interest when TPAs are used, and protecting against conflict of interest claims; and consideration of tendering
October 19, 2009, 8:00 AM - October 20, 2009, 5:45 PM