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U.S. Supreme Court

Supreme Court Favors ERISA Claimant Who Alleged Administrator Conflict

Posted Jun 19, 2008 9:24 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled an insurer that administers an employee benefits plan has a conflict of interest when it has the dual role of determining whether an employee is eligible for benefits and paying the benefits out of its own pocket.

The majority opinion (PDF posted by SCOTUSblog) by Justice Stephen G. Breyer said the dual role is a factor that should be considered when a court reviews a benefits decision under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974.

The insurer, MetLife, had argued the employer had implicitly accepted the conflict by giving it a dual role.

The case is MetLife v. Glenn.

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