This week, the US Supreme Court decided to hear M&G Polymer USA LLC’s challenge to a district court ruling that says the company has to pay retiree’s health care benefits for life, according to the Court’s web site.
The collective bargaining agreement in this case, failed to state exactly how long retirees health benefits lasted. A decision by the Sixth Circuit Court said, that meant the benefits were for life.
The Plaintiffs, workers and their dependents, sued after they learned they would be required to make health care contributions. The district court found the Defendant’s liable for violating a labor agreement and an employee welfare benefit plan, and ordered a permanent injunction ordering Defendants to reinstate plaintiffs to the plan. Defendant argued that the lower court erred in determining that letters requiring contributions weren’t part of the labor agreement and that Plaintiffs lifetime contribution-free benefits vested at retirement. The Sixth Circuit decision, on appeal from United States District Court for southern Ohio, affirmed the district court, according to the unpublished decision. See Tackett, et al. v. M& G Polymers USA, et al. The named plaintiffs worked at a West Virginia polyester plant.