What is ERISA and How Does It Protect Your Employer Benefits? By Dan Atkerson on May 01, 2017

ERISA AgreementERISA is the Employee Retirement Income Security Act enacted in 1974. It places a set of rules and regulations on employer benefit plans, including retirement pensions and healthcare coverage. In recent years, we have seen many retirement pensions and other benefits disappear, leaving many hard workers confused and without enough funds to get them through life. Employers are not required to offer retirement benefits and healthcare plans, but if they do, they must adhere to these regulations. Keep reading below to learn if your employment coverage plans are up to code.

What Does ERISA Do?

  • It makes sure you understand the plan: ERISA states that an employer must have a clear, detailed documentation of the plan and how it’s funded, so that the employee knows what to expect and where that money is coming from. Check your plans for discrepancies in the documentation.
  • It makes sure your employer is a fiduciary: ERISA determines that the employer administering the plan acts as a fiduciary, which means that the employer must act reasonably in the financial interest of the company and employees covered. Determining what is “reasonable” is where things can get tricky and the law may need to get involved.

What to Do if You Suspect Violations

Common violations of ERISA policy include: improper denial of benefits to current and former employees through wrongful termination, fiduciary duty violations, and failing to uphold agreement terms. Practices such as backdating documents to reduce benefits, and improper plans that benefit the employer while lessening benefits for employees have been cited.

If you may have been affected, there are several options for you. You may file your case though the Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), or you may file a lawsuit in court. Dallas employment lawyer Dan A. Atkerson has experience with many complex benefit cases, and can help you get the best available options.

Related to This

Dan Atkerson

Law Offices of Dan A. Atkerson

Dan A. Atkerson has been protecting the rights of North Texas employees for over nearly four decades. He is affiliated with several prestigious legal organizations, including: 

  • The State Bar of Texas
  • The Dallas Bar Association
  • The United States Court of Appeals Fifth Circuit
  • Texas Supreme Court and all Texas trial and appellate courts
  • Texas federal courts for the Northern and Eastern Districts of Texas

Through aggressive, knowledgeable representation, he has helped clients all over the state reach significant verdicts and settlements. To schedule a consultation at our law firm, request an appointment online or call us at (214) 383-3606.

Get In Touch

Rate, Review & Explore

Social Accounts Sprite