Florida ERISA Blog

This is a weblog devoted to recent developments in ERISA and employee benefits law in Florida.

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Location: Clearwater, Florida

Marcus Castillo is a Florida Bar board certified labor and employment lawyer with substantial experience handling ERISA and related employee benefit cases. Mr. Castillo has extensively lectured on ERISA and, for a number of years, was the instructor for the ERISA component of the labor and employment law board certification review course sponsored by the Florida Bar. Mr. Castillo has handled a variety of ERISA and related claims including group short and long term disability insurance cases, accidental death and dismemberment and life insurance claims, group health insurance cases, disability pension and other pension benefit cases. To learn more about his practice visit www.haas-castillo.com

Thursday, January 20, 2005

The Unum Settlement

ERISA benefits litigators are well aware that Unum (and its various permutations, e.g., Unum Provident, First Unum, etc.) is the nation’s largest disability insurer. On November 18, 2004, New York State Attorney General Elliott Spitzer announced a landmark settlement with Unum resolving a multi-state investigation into alleged unfair claims-handling practices. The settlement requires Unum: (1) to reassess approximately 200,000 claims that previously had been denied; (2) to completely restructure its claims-handling procedures to ensure objectivity and fairness; and (3) to pay a 15-million-dollar fine.

The settlement will revive long denied claims including many that were clearly time barred. It will also give current litigants a shot at a remand to the plan. The ultimate outcome of all this “reassessment” is anyone’s guess.

The settlement agreements are worth a read. You can find them here.