A lawsuit alleging a breach of ERISA fiduciary duties has been filed by the administrators and sponsors of the 401(k) plan for MBA Engineering Inc. The defendant is Vantage Benefits Administrators.
Fiduciary Duties Allegedly Breached in Violation Of ERISA
According to the breach of ERISA fiduciary duties lawsuit, the defendant stole more than $2.2 million in retirement benefits from the participants of the MBA Engineering plan. When a private employer provides benefits such as long-term disability insurance, health insurance, or retirement, those plans have to comply with ERISA. One of the most important aspects of this law is that a strict fiduciary duty applies to any person who helps manage the plan.
When a plan is mismanaged, harm to the plan participants may occur. By the time the participants discover this problem, it may have cost them significantly. Fiduciaries are considered administrators, trustees, and any other person who persons functions that enable them authority or control over a benefit plan’s management.Certain individuals could be named directly as fiduciaries, but other people may be involved depending on their job.
According to the lawsuit paperwork, the defendants falsified participant account statements and accessible website information to make it seem as though the account balances were accurate and whole. Plan participants, therefore, never knew that the money was actually being transferred to any other account.
Allegedly, the defendants were transferring millions of dollars in retirement benefits owed to the engineering employees from the plans to their own bank accounts and for their own purposes. Those defendants served as fiduciaries under ERISA rules, also known as the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974.
According to the lawsuit, the fiduciary duties owed to the plan participants were breached despite the fact that the plan participants were owned the highest duties of trust and care. The lawsuit goes on to detail that defendants misrepresented participant account values by falsifying information in the account statements as well as on the website to make it seem as though participants would be able to access the appropriate funds. The primary purpose of such actions, according to the breach of ERISA fiduciary duties lawsuit, was to defraud the participants in a plan and to hide the fraudulent conduct.
Allegedly, this behavior occurred between June 2016 and June 2017 and involved more than $2.2 million, causing catastrophic injury to the plans. The breach of ERISA fiduciary duties lawsuit demands that defendants repay all of the assets stolen from the plans with lost earnings or interest.
The fiduciary duties lawsuit is MBA Engineering v Vantage, Case No. 3:17-CV-03300-L filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division.
If you believe that you have grounds to pursue a case based on breach of fiduciary duties, consulting with the lawyers at Bradley/Grombacher today can assist you with getting started. Fill out the form on this page to learn more about how a lawyer can help you.
Note: Bradley/Grombacher is not representing the plaintiff in this lawsuit.