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Termination of Benefits

Duke Energy Truck by Electrical Tower

At some companies, a collective bargaining agreement allows employees to bank their unused sick leave or short-term disability hours, even for years. Should the company later be allowed simply to wipe out those hours, without discussion or compensation? The complaint for this class action alleges that Duke Energy Corporation did just that. It claims violations of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) and the Tennessee Human Rights Act (THRA) along with age discrimination.

Car with Progressive Insurance Company Logo

Automobile insurance policies offer personal injury protection (PIP) benefits for persons who are injured in auto accidents, whether it’s the insured person or a third party. But the complaint for this class action alleges that Progressive Insurance Company terminated benefits unfairly for each of the plaintiffs because it claimed that they had reached the maximum medical improvement (MMI) for the injury in their claim.

Coal Mine

When Connie Gilbert began working for Consol Energy’s nonunion Buchanan Mine, the complaint for this class action says, she attended a group orientation that told new employees that if they worked for the company for ten years and reached the age of 55, they would receive retirement benefits for themselves and their spouses for life. Gilbert, who’d previous worked in a union mine, accepted these terms. In September 2014, she retired and began receiving retirement benefits. But, according to the complaint, in June of 2015—less than a year later—she received a letter telling her that her welfare benefits would terminate at the end of that year. The complaint contends that employees were repeatedly told about their “lifetime” benefits, to prevent them from taking offers of union or more lucrative jobs, and that the company should not now be pulling the benefits they earned with so many years’ employment.