In March 2017, Renaker Hasselman Scott obtained victories for three separate clients whose employer-sponsored long-term disability benefits had been unfairly denied by insurance companies. We are very pleased that we were able to secure these benefits for our clients, who unfortunately are no longer able to work due to disabling conditions.
Renaker Hasselman Scott is proud to sponsor the Robohawks, VEX Robotics 2017 California state tournament champions! In April, the Robohawks will travel to Louisville, KY, for the World Championships, where they reached the division finalist level in 2016. Go Robohawks!
In October 2016, a client of Renaker Hasselman Scott LLP obtained service-connected disability retirement benefits from the Contra Costa County Employees’ Retirement Association (CCCERA), including five years of past-due benefits. The award came after a favorable decision from the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ), and then a ruling by the CCCERA Retirement Board to adopt the favorable ALJ decision.
Renaker Hasselman Scott LLP and the National Center for Lesbian Rights have filed suit on behalf of David Reed, the surviving spouse of Donald Gardner, a long-time KRON-TV employee and participant in the KRON/IBEW Local 45 Pension Plan. The couple registered as domestic partners with the California Secretary of State in 2004. In 2009, Mr. Gardner retired, and the couple later married just before Mr. Gardner’s death in 2014. California law gives registered domestic partners the status of married persons. Although the pension plan terms incorporate California law, following Mr. Gardner’s death the plan refused to pay a surviving spouse benefit to Mr. Reed. The lawsuit challenges the plan’s refusal to pay the survivor benefit and also asserts claims for document disclosure penalties and breach of fiduciary duty.
Read the complaint in Reed v. KRON/IBEW Local 45 Pension Plan, et al.
Read the press release.
The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California granted final approval to the settlement of Barling v. UEBT Retiree Medical Plan. Renaker Hasselman Scott LLP and Bolt Keenley Kim LLP represented a class of more than 7,000 retirees from the United Food and Commercial Workers union. The retirees challenged the Plan’s reduction of benefits by deductibles and co-insurance payments between October 2010 and February 2013. Under the settlement, retirees and dependents whose benefits were reduced by $5 or more during this period will receive payment for over 85 percent of the amounts by which their benefits were reduced.
Checks are expected to be mailed on August 2. Checks must be cashed within 90 days after issuance. Class members should be sure to cash their checks promptly.
The Class Notice, Final Approval Order, and other materials are available at http://renakerhasselman.com/ufcw-retiree-settlement/.
Questions about the settlement may be directed to the attorneys or to the settlement administrator at 1-866-515-9453.
American Bar Association President-Elect Linda Klein appointed Teresa Renaker to a third one-year term on the ABA Commission on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity. The SOGI mission is to promote full and equal participation in the legal profession by persons of differing sexual orientations and gender identities.
Renaker Hasselman Scott LLP is proud to announce that all three partners were selected to 2016 Northern California Super Lawyers lists in the employee benefits category. Teresa Renaker and Margo Hasselman Greenough were both selected to the 2016 Northern California Super Lawyers list, and Kirsten Scott was selected to the 2016 Northern California Rising Stars list. In addition, Teresa was named to the Northern California Top 50 Women Attorneys and Top 100 Attorneys. All three also were named to the Top Women Attorneys in Northern California list.
For Kirsten, this is the third straight year appearing on the Northern California Rising Stars list, and for Margo, this is the fourth straight year appearing on the Northern California Super Lawyers list, after four years on the Rising Stars list. Teresa has been named to Northern California Super Lawyers for the last ten years, to Top 50 Women Attorneys for nine straight years, and to Top 100 Attorneys for five years.
Super Lawyers uses a rigorous selection process based on independent research and peer evaluation by practice area. Only 5 percent of lawyers in a state are named to Super Lawyers each year, and only 2.5% of attorneys in the state are selected to the Rising Stars list each year.
Margo Hasselman and Teresa Renaker will speak at the National Employment Lawyers Association 2016 Annual Convention in Los Angeles, June 22-25. Margo will speak on a panel on “Deferred Compensation Issues In Negotiating Severance Agreements” and Teresa will moderate and speak on a panel on “Advocating For The Rights of LGBT Employees.”
The California State Teachers Retirement System has reversed its denial of a 75 percent survivor pension benefit to Renaker Hasselman’s client, the widow of a CalSTRS retiree. The couple, who had been together for 32 years, married following the Supreme Court’s Perry decision, which restored same-sex marriage in California. Unfortunately, the retiree spouse died shortly after. The retirement system initially denied a survivor benefit based on the failure to satisfy a waiting period between the status change and the death, but reversed the denial based on the couple’s prior registered domestic partnership.
Margo Hasselman addressed members of the German American Business Association as part of a panel on “The New Scalable Worker Model,” discussing the growing trend of companies classifying workers as independent contractors instead of employees. Margo discussed the importance of proper classification of workers and cautioned employers not to shirk the responsibilities they take on when they become employers. Video of the panel is available here.