Retirement Benefits

Retirement benefits are critical to your long-term financial stability. You have worked hard and saved for your retirement your entire career. As a result, it is essential that you get the full benefits to which you are entitled and for which you saved.

What Are the Different Types of Retirement Plans?

Retirement benefits aretypically paid after your employment ends. Retirement benefits come in many forms. Some employers offer defined benefit plans, also called pension plans, under which they pay a certain amount based on your compensation and years of service. Most employers today offer defined contribution plans, typically 401(k) or 403(b) plans, which are funded by the money you set aside from your payroll and possibly a match or additional contribution from your employer. The most common examples of retirement plans offered by employers include:

  • Pension Plans (both single employer and multi-employer plans)
  • 401(k) Plans (offered by for-profit companies)
  • 403(b) Plans (offered by non-profit organizations)
  • Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOP)
  • Supplemental Executive Retirement Plans (SERP)

What Issues Can Arise with Your Retirement Benefits?

Retirement plans are complicated, and various issues can arise:

  • Your plan may be underfunded, mismanaged
  • Your plan may be mismanaged, and/or administered in a way that results in you paying excessive fees
  • Your employer may contest your dates of service to deny years of vesting and/or service credits
  • Your employer may even try to terminate you right before your retirement benefits become fully vested

All these case scenarios are challengeable under the law, and we can help you get the benefits that are rightfully yours to collect.

What Laws Apply to Your Retirement Benefits?

If you are employed by a private-sector employer, your retirement plan will be governed by the federal benefits law, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA). ERISA contains strict funding and reporting requirements for employers offering retirement benefits to their employees. ERISA imposes rigorous fiduciary duties on your employer to ensure it manages your plan appropriately and always acts in your best interest. ERISA also contains significant procedural and other legal rights to protect your benefits. ERISA establishes mandatory claims and appeals procedures in the event your benefits are denied, terminated, or paid at a lower rate or for a different duration of time than you were promised.

Know Your Rights

Employees gain vested rights to their pension and other retirement benefits even before they reach retirement age, which means that once you earn those benefits, they cannot be taken away. If something seems wrong with what your employer and/or plan administrator tells you about your retirement benefits, you should consult a lawyer. You may even want to seek legal counsel before initiating a claim under your plan. A skilled retirement benefits attorney can assist you in understanding the terms of your plan and advise you on how to proceed through the claim and appeal process in the event your claim is denied. That way, you can preserve your claim and put together the best case possible if you ultimately need to go to court to get the benefits to which you are legally entitled.

Does This Apply to You?

Contact DeBofsky Law for an attorney consultation. We will work with you to figure out your problem, and how we can help. Contact us today!

You Deserve the Retirement Income You Intended to Receive

Employers and plan administrators still make mistakes and fail to live up to their fiduciary obligations despite the legal protections afforded to you under the law.  If your employer has denied or cut back your promised retirement benefits, you have the right to fight for what you earned and saved.  You may even have a case against your employer and/or plan administrator. Being denied retirement benefits can be confusing and scary. The specialized benefits attorneys at DeBofsky Law understand how ERISA protects your benefits, and have the skills and expertise to preserve your rights in and out of the courthouse. You have worked hard for a secure retirement.  We’re here to fight for you and help you keep the benefits you earned.

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ERISA is an acronym for the federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974. Most people have never heard of ERISA, but its comprehensiveness impacts the vast majority of American workers and their dependents. The original intent behind ERISA’s enactment was to remedy pension plan abuses; however, just prior to Congress’ passage of the ERISA law, the scope […]

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