Our attorneys have worked on both the plaintiff and the defense side of claims arising under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), Chapter 18 of Title 29 of the United States Code. ERISA governs employee benefit plans, which are defined by statute to include both employee welfare benefit plans and employee pension benefit plans.
An employee welfare benefit plan is a plan, fund, or program established or maintained by an employer, by an employee organization (like a union), or by both, for the purpose of providing employees and dependents, through the purchase of insurance or otherwise, certain benefits other than wages, including, but not limited to: medical care or benefits; surgical care or benefits; hospital care or benefits; benefits in the event of sickness, accident, disability, death, or unemployment; vacation benefits; apprenticeship or other training programs; day care centers; scholarship funds; and prepaid legal services. Similarly, an employee pension benefit plan is a plan, fund, or program established or maintained by an employer, by an employer organization (like a union), or by both, which, by its express terms or as a result of surrounding circumstances, provides retirement income to employees or results in a deferral of income by employees for periods extending to the termination of covered employment or beyond.
ERISA is an extremely complex and lengthy piece of federal legislation that sets forth standards for how employee benefit plans are to operate, giving employees and their dependents a legal cause of action in the event the benefit plans are not operated as prescribed. Whether you are a sophisticated employer, insurer, or third-party claims administrator defending against an ERISA claim, or a current or former employee or dependent seeking to file an ERISA claim, you will need an experienced ERISA attorney. Our team has handled a variety of ERISA cases, from those involving simple claims against a single defendant for wrongful denial of group health and pension benefits, to those involving numerous claims against multiple defendants for statutory violations of ERISA’s COBRA notice provisions. Whatever issues your ERISA case presents and whether you seek to file or defend against an ERISA claim, we can help you.
Texas is unique in that employers are able to opt out of the workers' compensation system. These companies, known as non-subscribers, can establish their own occupational injury program; however, they can be sued by their employees for on-the-job injuries. Non-subscriber liability is a unique area of law requiring knowledgeable legal counsel. Our firm represents non-subscribing employers throughout Texas in work injury litigation. We specialize in early evaluation of non-subscriber claims and defenses. We also have experience defending employers before juries and arbitrators against these claims.