Taft-Hartley Plans

SFMS has significant and varied experience representing Taft-Hartley health, welfare and benefit plans in a variety of matters. We represent the trustees or third-party administrators of defined benefit plans in regulatory compliance matters and in litigation such as recovery of fees or losses. We have also defended trustees in claims of breach of fiduciary duty.

With multiple offices across the United States, our firm is equipped to handle Taft-Hartley matters and other employee benefits and fiduciary compliance cases nationwide.

Taft-Hartley Multi-Employer Benefit Plans

The Taft-Hartley Act allows union employees at private companies to join forces with other union groups to set up health plans and other benefits. Section 302(c)(5) of Taft-Hartley, also known as the Labor Management Relations Act, provides for multi-employer health, welfare and benefit plans, which must meet the following three criteria: (1) one or more employers contribute to (2) a plan collectively bargained with each participating employer (2) with the plan and its assets jointly managed by a board of trustees whose members are equally drawn from labor and management.

Taft-Hartley plans may provide various types of benefits:

  • Pension benefits
  • Medical care and hospitalization
  • Prescription drug coverage
  • Mental health coverage
  • Vision and dental plans
  • Vacation, holiday and severance
  • Disability and accident insurance
  • Supplemental unemployment benefits
  • Life insurance
  • Apprenticeships and training
  • Academic scholarships
  • Child care services
  • Employee legal services
  • Housing assistance

The attorneys of SFMS have an established history and track record of representing Taft-Hartley plans in a variety of compliance and litigation matters, including issues arising in connection with the following matters:

  • Affordable Care Act ("Obamacare") compliance and regulatory issues
  • Antitrust and unfair trade practice matters
  • ERISA contribution, fee, fiduciary and reimbursement issues
  • Insurance coverage and related regulatory matters
  • Shareholder derivative litigation
  • Securities litigation and investment portfolio monitoring

We typically represent the defined benefit pension plan in regulatory compliance matters or recovery of fees on behalf of the members. On occasion, we are also called upon to defend trustees and plan administrators against allegations of fraud, self-dealing, mismanagement or other breach of fiduciary duty. We resolve disputes through arbitration and negotiated settlements where feasible, but our proven trial lawyers are prepared to go to court.

SFMS is a leader in Taft-Hartley litigation and related gatekeeper cases. Contact our firm to arrange a consultation regarding conflicts involving multi-employer pension plans. We handle cases in California, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and New Jersey, and in other jurisdictions throughout the United States.