Severance plans are designed to provide income to employees who are terminated, laid off or voluntarily quit. In contrast, a supplemental unemployment benefits (SUB) plan is designed to supplement a former employee’s state unemployment benefits after an involuntary termination.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit joined the Sixth Circuit in holding that forum selection clauses in plan documents are valid and enforceable under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA).
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit has ordered a Mississippi district court judge to reconsider approval of a $150 million settlement deal regarding an underfunded pension plan.
In Jones v. Singing River Health Servs. Found., No. 16-60550, 2017 WL 3178624 (5th Cir. July 27, 2017), Singing River Health Services Foundation (SRHS), a community-owned not-for-profit health system in Jackson County, Mississippi, failed to make contributions to its pension plan between 2009 and 2014, when the hospital board officially froze the plan. The missed contributions exceeded $55 million. When the financially imperiled health system sought to terminate and liquidate the plan, participants initiated a flurry of state and federal lawsuits. The settlement covered three consolidated federal court cases.