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Date: 07-28-2023

Case Style:

Valerie Jouett v. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida

Case Number: 0:23-cv-61048

Judge: Kathleen M. Williams

Court: United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida (Broward County)

Plaintiff's Attorney: maria T. Santi

Defendant's Attorney: Ardith M. Bronson

Description: Fort Lauderdale, Florida employment and labor lawyer lawyer represented Plaintiff who sued Defendant on an E.R.I.S.A.-Employee Benefits entitlement theory.

"ERISA stands for the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974. It is a federal law that sets minimum standards for most voluntarily established retirement and health plans in private industry to provide protection for individuals in these plans.

ERISA does not require employers to offer retirement or health plans, but if they do, the plans must meet certain requirements. These requirements include:

Providing participants with information about the plan, including its features and funding.
Setting minimum standards for participation, vesting, benefit accrual, and funding.
Requiring plans to establish a grievance and appeals process for participants to get benefits from their plans.
Giving participants the right to sue for benefits and breaches of fiduciary duty.

ERISA also establishes a federal agency, the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC), to insure benefits in certain defined benefit plans. If a plan terminates and is unable to pay its benefits, the PBGC will pay benefits to participants up to certain limits.

ERISA is an important law that protects the retirement savings of millions of Americans. It ensures that participants in these plans have access to important information about their plans, and that they have the right to sue for benefits if their plans are mismanaged.

Here are some of the key provisions of ERISA:

Plan participation: ERISA requires that most private-sector employers offer their employees the opportunity to participate in a retirement plan.
Vesting: ERISA requires that employees be vested in their retirement benefits after a certain period of time. This means that employees cannot lose their benefits if they leave their job before retirement.
Benefit accrual: ERISA requires that retirement plans provide a certain minimum level of benefit accrual. This means that employees must earn a certain amount of retirement benefits each year.
Funding: ERISA requires that retirement plans be adequately funded. This means that the plans must have enough money to pay out benefits when employees retire.
Fiduciary duties: ERISA requires that those who manage retirement plans act in the best interests of the plan participants. This means that fiduciaries must make decisions that are in the best interests of the participants, and not in their own interests.
Grievance and appeals process: ERISA requires that retirement plans have a grievance and appeals process. This means that participants who have a problem with their plan have a way to get their problem resolved.
Right to sue: ERISA gives participants the right to sue for benefits and breaches of fiduciary duty. This means that participants can sue their plan if they believe that they have been denied benefits or that their plan has been mismanaged.

ERISA is a complex law, but it is an important one that protects the retirement savings of millions of Americans. If you have questions about ERISA, you should consult with an attorney who specializes in this area of law."
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Outcome: 07/28/2023 18 NOTICE of Settlement by BLUE CROSS AND BLUE SHIELD OF FLORIDA (Bronson, Ardith) (Entered: 07/28/2023)
07/28/2023 19 PAPERLESS ORDER REQUIRING JOINT STIPULATION OF DISMISSAL AND ADMINISTRATIVELY CLOSING CASE. THIS MATTER is before the Court on the notice indicating that the Parties have reached a settlement. (DE 18 .) Accordingly, it is ORDERED AND ADJUDGED that on or before August 25, 2023, the Parties shall file a joint stipulation of dismissal. If the Parties wish for the Court to retain jurisdiction beyond the filing of their joint stipulation, they are advised that they must file the settlement agreement for review and any stipulation must comply with the Eleventh Circuit's holding in Anago Franchising, Inc. v. Shaz, LLC, 677 F.3d 1272 (11th Cir. 2012). Otherwise, the dismissal of this matter is effective and self-executing upon the filing of the Parties' joint stipulation of dismissal. Id. All pending motions are DENIED AS MOOT. All hearings, trial settings, and deadlines are CANCELED. This case is CLOSED for administrative purposes. Signed by Judge Kathleen M. Williams on 7/28/2023. (er01) (Entered: 07/28/2023)

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