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Home / Opinions / Courts / 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals / ERISA: Termination Of Benefits – Overpayment – Attorney’s Fees

ERISA: Termination Of Benefits – Overpayment – Attorney’s Fees

Where a claimant sued a plan administrator seeking reinstatement of his long-term disability benefits, it was not an abuse of discretion for the administrator to determine that the large payments received by the claimant were payments for the sale of a business, so the judgment of the district court awarding benefits, attorney’s fees and costs is reversed and remanded for consideration of the administrator’s counterclaim for overpayment of benefits.


Dissenting opinion by Bright, J.: “Unum abused its discretion in determining the large payments to Sullivan were from the sale of a business and not compensation in the form of bonuses. Accordingly, I would affirm the judgment of the district court and award Sullivan benefits.”

Judgment is reversed and remanded.

Govrik v. Unum Life Insurance Company of America (MLW No. 64544/Case No. 11-3711 – 18 pages) (U.S. Court of Appeals, 8th Circuit, Colloton, J.) Appealed from U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota, Davis, J. (Terrance J. Wagener, Minneapolis, argued for appellant; Molly R. Hamilton appeared on the brief) (Denise Yegge Tataryn, Edina, Minnesota, argued for appellee).

Read the full text of this opinion. (PDF)