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Employer Law Report

Tag Archives: benefits

Sixth Circuit Decision Reminds Employers: Get Your Ducks in a Row at the EEOC Charge Stage and, for Goodness Sake, Know Your Own Policies

Posted in EEO, Employee Benefits/ERISA

Gaglioti v. Levin Group, Inc. (6th Cir. Dec. 13, 2012), serves as a good reminder to employers to pin down their reasoning for terminating an employee at the start, and stick to it. In addition, all reasons for terminating an employee should be included in the termination meeting with the employee, or at the very least, at the EEOC charge stage, even if it might bruise the employee’s ego. Any change or supplementation to the original reason can make put the entire termination decision seem made up and send the employer to trial. It is also imperative that employers know …


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Supreme Court OKs Employer Use of Age as a Factor In Pension Plans

Posted in EEO, Employee Benefits/ERISA

In Kentucky Retirement Systems v. EEOC, No. 06-1037, 2008 WL 2445078 (U.S. June 19, 2008), the Supreme Court recently held that “where an employer adopts a pension plan that includes age as a factor” (in determining eligibility for retirement with pension benefits), and the employer subsequently “treats employees differently based on pension status,” the plan does not automatically violate the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA). Rather, the Court held that the plaintiff challenging such a policy must show that the differential treatment was “actually motivated” by age. In a 5-4 decision — with a rather strange alignment of …


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Supreme Court declines to hear retiree benefits case

Posted in EEO

This is an update to my prior post on January 2, 2008 regarding retiree healthcare benefits.

A legal battle dating back to 2000 regarding retiree benefits came to a close recently.  In 2000, the Third Circuit ruled that treating Medicare-eligible retirees differently than younger retirees violated the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA).  This prompted the EEOC to issue an exemption to the ADEA allowing employers to reduce or eliminate retiree healthcare benefits for Medicare-eligible retirees, while providing higher levels of benefits for those retirees who are not Medicare-eligible.  The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) challenged the EEOC’s authority to issue …


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New EEOC Rule Makes an Exemption to Erie Decision and Allows Coordination of Healthcare Benefits for Retirees with Medicare

Posted in EEO

On December 26, the EEOC announced a new rule that makes it easier for employers to help retirees maintain adequate healthcare benefits.  In particular, employers that provide retiree healthcare benefits may coordinate those benefits with Medicare benefits without engaging in age discrimination based on the difference in ages between younger non-Medicare-eligible retirees and older Medicare-eligible retirees.

In today’s employment landscape, fewer employers provide retiree benefits.  This forces many retired employees to rely solely on Medicare benefits to cover increasing healthcare costs—at best, a difficult situation.  As a result, many employers are searching for viable ways to continue to provide healthcare …


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