Civil Procedure

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When ERISA preempts state laws for employee benefits

The subject of pre-emption under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act is challenging, as illustrated by multiple Supreme Court rulings that have attempted to address pre-emption issues. The general rule is that any state law which relates to employee benefit plans is pre-empted if the law conflicts with the administration of an ERISA claim. However, […]

Federal court rejects remand request

Disability claims involving chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia are difficult to assess because the symptoms are self-reported and cannot be objectively verified. However, in Schnoor v. Walgreen Income Protection Plan, 2013 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 114435 (W.D.Mich. Aug. 14, 2013), the court had no difficulty seeing through a deficient claim evaluation, despite the broad deference given to the […]

Court report looks at issue of filing suits under pseudonyms

Litigation often involves sensitive personal issues that parties are reluctant to publicly disclose. Often in such cases, the parties resort to filing suit under a pseudonym to protect the identity of one or both of the parties. Cases involving disability benefits inherently relate to personal and confidential medical issues, yet courts rarely permit pseudonymous filings […]