Case: Richards v. FleetBoston Fin. Corp.

3:04-cv-01638 | U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut

Filed Date: Sept. 30, 2004

Closed Date: Oct. 15, 2008

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On September 30, 2004, former and current employees of FleetBoston Financial Corporation filed a lawsuit under ERISA against FleetBoston in the United States District Court for the District of Connecticut. The Plaintiffs, represented by private counsel, asked the court for declaratory and injunctive relief, as well as attorney fees and costs. Plaintiffs claimed that they were negatively impacted when FleetBoston changed its Pension Plan to one based on a cash balance formula.The Court (Judge …

On September 30, 2004, former and current employees of FleetBoston Financial Corporation filed a lawsuit under ERISA against FleetBoston in the United States District Court for the District of Connecticut. The Plaintiffs, represented by private counsel, asked the court for declaratory and injunctive relief, as well as attorney fees and costs. Plaintiffs claimed that they were negatively impacted when FleetBoston changed its Pension Plan to one based on a cash balance formula.

The Court (Judge Janet C. Hall) granted in part and denied in part Defendant's motion to dismiss on March 31, 2006. The Court dismissed Counts II, III, and VI in their entirety. It further granted the motion to dismiss as to all claims pursuant to ERISA § 503(a)(1)(B). However, the Court denied the motion to dismiss as to the remaining claims in Counts I, IV, and V. Richards v. FleetBoston Fin. Corp., 427 F. Supp. 2d 150 (D. Conn. 2006).

Also on March 31, 2006, the Court certified Plaintiffs' class under 23(b)(2). The class was defined as follows: people who "(a) are former or current Fleet employees who on December 31, 1996 [the day before the Amended Plan's effective date] were not at least age 50 with 15 years of vesting service, and (b) participated in the Fleet Pension Plan before January 1, 1997, and (c) have participated in the Fleet Pension Plan at any time since January 1, 1997." Richards v. FleetBoston Fin. Corp., 235 F.R.D. 165 (D. Conn. 2006).

On July 24, 2006, the Court granted Defendant's second motion to dismiss with respect to Count II and the part of Count V premised on the Summary Plan Description's (SPD) lack of an explanation of how benefit accruals under the plan are reduced by advancing age. The Court denied the motion with respect to the remaining parts of Count V. Richards v. FleetBoston Fin. Corp., 2006 WL 2092086 (D. Conn. Jul. 24, 2006).

On October 16, 2006, the Court granted Plaintiffs' motion for amended class certification and certified the proposed class pursuant to Rule 23(b)(2) and Rule 23(b)(1)(A). Further, the Court denied Defendant's motion to certify the SPD class (Count IV) under Rule 23(b)(2). Richards v. FleetBoston Fin. Corp., 238 F.R.D. 345 (D. Conn. 2006).

Also on October 16, 2006, the Court denied Defendant's motions for a certificate of appealability or for reconsideration of the decision in which the Court refused to dismiss Count I of the Complaint. The Court found that an interlocutory appeal was not appropriate because it would not help to avoid protracted litigation, nor was this an exceptional or rare circumstance. The Court denied the motion to reconsider because it found that the statutory language in question was unambiguous. Richards v. FleetBoston Fin. Corp., 2006 WL 3000768 (D. Conn. Oct. 16, 2006).

The Court preliminarily approved the class settlement between the parties on April 24, 2008. Including attorneys' fees and incentives for class representatives, the total monetary payment to the class totaled $83,401,000.

On October 15, 2008, the Court granted final approval to the settlement and dismissed the case. By a separate order on the same day, the Court granted Plaintiffs' attorneys about $17.5 million in fees and costs. The Court also granted $15,000 to the class representative.

The case was closed in October 2008. There was some later litigation related to bonding issues, but the case is now complete.

Summary Authors

Haley Waller (8/19/2010)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4814916/parties/richards-v-fleetboston-financial-corp/


Judge(s)

Hall, Janet C. (Connecticut)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Morgado, Dale J (Connecticut)

Moukawsher, Thomas G. (Connecticut)

Smith, Ian (Connecticut)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Conlon, William F. (Illinois)

Goldberg, Thomas D. (Connecticut)

Gross, Scott (Illinois)

Guarraci, Brian (Illinois)

Harris, Helen (Connecticut)

Johnson, David Brian (Illinois)

Judge(s)

Hall, Janet C. (Connecticut)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Morgado, Dale J (Connecticut)

Moukawsher, Thomas G. (Connecticut)

Smith, Ian (Connecticut)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Conlon, William F. (Illinois)

Goldberg, Thomas D. (Connecticut)

Gross, Scott (Illinois)

Guarraci, Brian (Illinois)

Harris, Helen (Connecticut)

Johnson, David Brian (Illinois)

Kelly, Erin E. (Illinois)

Koca, Julie (Illinois)

Rea, Anne E. (Illinois)

Twardy, Stanley A. Jr. (Connecticut)

Other Attorney(s)

Carroll, Keith P. (Massachusetts)

McGinty, Kevin (Massachusetts)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket [PACER]

Richards v. FleetBoston Fin. Corporation

Sept. 30, 2004 Docket

Docket

Richards v. FleetBoston Financial Corporation

Dec. 2, 2009 Docket
20-1

PLAINTIFF’S MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR CLASS CERTIFICATION

Richards v. FleetBoston Financial Corporation

Dec. 28, 2004 Pleading / Motion / Brief
40-1

PLAINTIFF’S MEMORANDUM OF LAW IN OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANTS’ MOTION TO DISMISS

Richards v. FleetBoston Financial Corporation

Feb. 28, 2005 Pleading / Motion / Brief
45-1

REPLY BRIEF OF DEFENDANTS FLEETBOSTON FINANCIAL CORPORATION AND FLEETBOSTON FINANCIAL PENSION PLAN IN SUPPORT OF THEIR MOTION TO DISMISS

Richards v. FleetBoston Financial Corporation

March 28, 2005 Pleading / Motion / Brief
68-1

DEFENDANTS’ MEMORANDUM OF LAW IN OPPOSITION TO PLAINTIFF’S MOTION FOR CLASS CERTIFICATION

Richards v. FleetBoston Financial Corporation

Sept. 19, 2005 Pleading / Motion / Brief
76-1

PLAINTIFF’S REPLY MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR CLASS CERTIFICATION

Richards v. FleetBoston Financial Corporation

Nov. 10, 2005 Pleading / Motion / Brief
111

Order- Class Certification

Richards v. FleetBoston Fin. Corporation

235 F.R.D. 165

March 31, 2006 Order/Opinion
112

Order

Richards v. FleetBoston Fin. Corporation

427 F.Supp.2d 150

March 31, 2006 Order/Opinion
118-1

PLAINTIFF’S MEMORANDUM OF LAW IN SUPPORT OF MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION OF MOTION TO DISMISS

Richards v. FleetBoston Financial Corporation

April 17, 2006 Pleading / Motion / Brief

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4814916/richards-v-fleetboston-financial-corp/

Last updated May 11, 2022, 8 p.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link
111

RULING granting in part and denying in part Plaintiff's 19 Motion to Certify Class and certifies the proposed class pursuant to Rule 23(b)(2) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Signed by Judge Janet C. Hall on 3/31/08. (Candee, D.)

March 31, 2006 RECAP
112

ORDER granting in part and denying in part 30 Motion to Dismiss. Signed by Judge Janet C. Hall on 3/31/06. (Candee, D.)

March 31, 2006 RECAP
148

Ruling granting in part and denying in part 128 Motion to Dismiss . Signed by Judge Janet C. Hall on 7/21/2006. (Sanders, C.)

July 24, 2006 RECAP

State / Territory: Connecticut

Case Type(s):

Equal Employment

Special Collection(s):

Private Employment Class Actions

Key Dates

Filing Date: Sept. 30, 2004

Closing Date: Oct. 15, 2008

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

former or current Fleet employees who on December 31, 1996 were over the age of 50 with 15 years of vesting service, participated in the Fleet Pension Plan before January 1, 1997, and has participated since that date

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Public Interest Lawyer: No

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: Yes

Class Action Outcome: Granted

Defendants

FleetBoston Financial Corporation, Private Entity/Person

Case Details

Causes of Action:

Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), 29 U.S.C. § 1001

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Monetary Relief

Any published opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Plaintiff

Nature of Relief:

Damages

Source of Relief:

Settlement

Form of Settlement:

Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree

Amount Defendant Pays: $83 million

Issues

General:

Disparate Treatment

Pattern or Practice

Discrimination-area:

Accommodation / Leave

Other Conditions of Employment (including assignment, transfer, hours, working conditions, etc)

Pay / Benefits

Discrimination-basis:

Age discrimination