The Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) is a federal law that sets minimum standards for retirement and health plans in the private industry.
This act protects the interests of employees in these plans. Yet, violations can occur, and understanding the signs of potential breaches can empower employees to seek necessary action.
Potential violations of ERISA laws
Under ERISA, employers have a fiduciary duty to act in the best interest of the plan participants. If an employer fails to uphold this duty, it can lead to a violation. One common form of violation involves failure to follow the plan terms. This happens when an employer does not adhere to the rules and procedures outlined in the plan document.
Improper disclosure of plan information
Employers are also required to provide participants with important information about their plans. This includes details about plan features, funding and documents like Summary Plan Descriptions (SPDs). If your employer fails to provide this information or provides incorrect or misleading information, they may be violating ERISA laws.
Mismanagement of plan assets
Employers must manage plan assets responsibly. Misuse or mismanagement of these funds, such as diverting them for other purposes or making imprudent investments, constitutes a violation.
Denial of benefits
Denial of rightful benefits to an employee, whether by refusing to pay or delaying payments, is another potential ERISA violation. Justify any such denial by valid reasons under the terms of the plan.
Discrimination against participants
ERISA prohibits employers from discriminating against employees who exercise their rights under the plan. If an employer retaliates against an employee for asserting their rights, it is a violation of the act.
If you suspect your employer in Delaware is violating ERISA laws, consider gathering evidence and seeking advice from a knowledgeable source. It is important to remember that employees have a right to secure and fair treatment under their employer’s retirement and health plans.