A federal judge has denied Advocate Health Care's motion to dismiss claims brought by participants in its defined benefit plan on the grounds that the religiously affiliated health care provider does not qualify for 'church plan' status under ERISA. 

Based in Illinois, Advocate operates 12 hospitals. The non-profit was formed in 1995 and has affiliations with the United Church of Christ and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. It is not, however, owned by the churches. 

Former and current Advocate employees allege Advocate's five-year vesting period for its defined benefit plan is "improperly long," and that it failed to adequately fund the plan and failed to provide proper communications regarding future benefits required under ERISA.

Complete your profile to continue reading and get FREE access to BenefitsPRO, part of your ALM digital membership.

  • Critical BenefitsPRO information including cutting edge post-reform success strategies, access to educational webcasts and videos, resources from industry leaders, and informative Newsletters.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM, BenefitsPRO magazine and BenefitsPRO.com events
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including ThinkAdvisor.com and Law.com

© 2024 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from www.copyright.com. All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.

Nick Thornton

Nick Thornton is a financial writer covering retirement and health care issues for BenefitsPRO and ALM Media. He greatly enjoys learning from the vast minds in the legal, academic, advisory and money management communities when covering the retirement space. He's also written on international marketing trends, financial institution risk management, defense and energy issues, the restaurant industry in New York City, surfing, cigars, rum, travel, and fishing. When not writing, he's pushing into some land or water.