A company's detailed paper trail saved it from a lawsuit and subsequent appeal by former union employees who felt they were denied promised retirement benefits, a court has ruled.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit decided in favor of Union Labor Life Co. and Amalgamated Life Insurance Co. because "there were several subsequent communications (to employees) making it clear that no defined benefit plan participation was offered until 2010." 

The defendants said numerous notices were sent in 2004, when Union Labor Life outsourced its claims administration services to Amalgamated Life, showing that employees would be able to keep their jobs but would not be offered pension benefits under the transaction. Before the transaction occurred, the plaintiffs worked for ULLICO and were covered by a collective bargaining agreement, which included participation in the company's defined benefit pension plan.

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