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On Tetreault, Gabriel, and the First Circuit's Reluctance to Recognize Equitable Estoppel in ERISA Cases
Stephen Rosenberg, The Wagner Law Group Link to more items from this source
Nov. 18, 2014
"As an evidentiary bar, [the Ninth Circuit's requirement of extraordinary circumstances] separates the routine case where there is a random misstatement from a low level HR person upon which a plaintiff's lawyer tries to fashion an entire estoppel claim (which federal court judges have been seeing, and for the most part rejecting, for years) from a deliberate pattern and practice of self-serving conduct that harms participants (and which federal court judges don't see all that often). These types of additional requirements for estoppel claims under the equitable relief provision of ERISA, above and beyond the standard requirement of reasonable reliance on a misstatement of fact, allow the courts to limit this type of relief, in the ERISA context, to the more egregious circumstances only." [Tetreault v. Reliance Standard, No. 13-2353 (1st Cir. Oct. 6, 2014); Gabriel v. Alaska Electrical Pension Fund, No. 12-354581 (9th Cir. June 6, 2014)]

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