During the panel hearing beforethe Ninth Circuit, Judge Andrew Hurwitz, an Obama appointee,hammered the plaintiff's attorney on the claim that Chevron failedits fiduciary obligations.

When the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recentlyaffirmed a lower court decision to dismiss a 401(k) excessive fee lawsuit, thethree Democrat-appointed jurists addressed a simple question: Doplaintiffs in retirement plans have to show plausible evidence thatsponsors breached their fiduciary obligations, or do plaintiffsmerely have to make an allegation to get a court to hear theclaims?

In 2017, the District Court for the Northern District ofCalifornia dismissed the claims in White v. Chevron Corp., whichincluded allegations that a money market fund was imprudently usedin lieu of a stable value fund, more expensive retail shares ofmutual funds were offered when cheaper alternatives existed, andthe plan charged excessive record-keeping fees.

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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.