The U.S. Department of Labor filed a complaint in federal court seeking to restore $256,457, plus lost opportunity costs, to the Heartland Foods Inc. 401(k) Profit Sharing Plan. Based on an investigation by the department’s Employee Benefits Security Administration, the co-owners of the company failed to properly manage the assets of the plan by comingling employee contributions with the company’s general operating accounts, in violation of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act.

“Incorporating employees’ voluntary salary contributions into the general assets of a company and failing to forward them to their retirement plan is a violation of the law and the trust workers have placed in their employers,” said L. Joe Rivers, director of EBSA’s Cincinnati Regional Office, which conducted the investigation. “The Labor Department is committed to helping workers obtain their rightful benefits so that they can continue to provide for themselves and their families during retirement.”

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