ERISA stands for the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, a set of federal laws that were created in order to protect employee benefits such as retirement benefits, healthcare benefits, disability benefits, stock benefits, and vacation/leave benefits.
The history of ERISA begins in the 1960s, when car maker Studebaker declared bankruptcy and closed its plant. The company's pension plan was poorly funded, leaving thousands of workers without the retirement benefits that they had been promised. In response, the President's Committee on Corporate Pension Plans was created, and lawmakers began working against business groups to create regulations that would prevent workers from losing promised benefits. Finally, after years of committees and public hearings, President Gerald Ford signed ERISA into law on Labor Day 1974.
Are all companies required to follow ERISA?
While ERISA does not require companies to have retirement plans or other minimum employee benefits, it does regulate how companies that do offer benefits respond to their employees claiming those benefits. For example, ERISA regulates how pension plans are funded and how pensions are paid. Likewise, ERISA regulates how employers who offer health insurance benefits must cover those who lose their jobs or those with pre-existing medical conditions.
If your employer has wrongfully denied any of your employee benefits, or if your insurance company has denied a claim you have made that is connected to your employee benefits, you may have an ERISA case that needs to be handled in federal court. For example, if your insurance company has denied your long-term disability claim, and if your disability insurance was provided by your employer, you may need to file an appeal with the help of an ERISA attorney.
To speak with an attorney today, or to get your ERISA questions answered, call the Voss Law Firm at 888-614-7730. Want more information now? Connect with Voss Law Firm on Facebook.