Is Litigation a Pension Savers Best Friend? – A Masterclass Session with Jerry Schlichter

Online symposium using interactive Zoom. 

Tuesday, September 8th, from 6pm until 8pm, UK time

Sponsorship opportunities available – please get in touch

Executive Summary; scroll down for the speakers and to make bookings

We are very pleased to have Jerry Schlichter centre-stage at this symposium. For over 10 years he has been battling for fair treatment for pension savers through litigation. 

This is a definite not-to-be-missed event for anybody interested in transparency on costs/charges and the role of litigation/class actions in driving pro-consumer reform in the pensions space.

In particular, this event will be of meaningful importance to pension scheme trustees; they ought to know the risk of exposure on a scheme and personal basis if they were to fail to properly take care of pension scheme members’ interests. 

Jerry is with the US law firm, Schlichter Bogard & Denton, which is recognised as a leader in protecting victims of financial abuse. 

They have successfully obtained relief valued at more than $1.5 billion on behalf of individuals harmed by financial wrongdoing – often by bringing lawsuits that other attorneys were unwilling to bring. 

This work has been repeatedly profiled, and the firm featured, in the US national media, and the firm’s work has been repeatedly highlighted by federal judges.

A representative sample of recent media coverage concerning their efforts on behalf of 401(k) investors is below:

It does make you wonder whether litigation has done more to drive down costs/charges in pensions and investments than anything else in the USA; and what the potential is for legal action to drive pro-consumer reform in other parts of the world too.

Here are some of the firm’s more high-profile cases:

  • Tibble v. Edison. Obtained a unanimous 9-0 landmark decision in the United States Supreme Court on behalf of a class of 401(k) investors in the first Supreme Court case to consider fees in 401(k) plans.
  • Abbott v. Lockheed Martin. Achieved an historic $62 million settlement on behalf of employees and retirees, the largest ever in a 401(k) case involving excessive-fee allegations; obtained substantial additional non-monetary relief.
  • Tussey v. ABB, Inc.  Obtained an historic $55 million settlement on behalf of participants in ABB, Inc.’s retirement plan after a dozen-year battle including the first full trial in a 401(k) excessive fee case.
  • Spano v. Boeing. Obtained $57 million settlement on behalf of 401(k) investors, the second-largest ever in a case involving excessive-fee allegations.
  • Nolte v. Cigna. Achieved a $35 million settlement, including substantial non-monetary relief, on behalf of a class of 401(k) investors in a case involving allegations of excessive fees and mismanagement.
  • Kruger v. Novant. Obtained $32 million settlement for employees and retirees, in addition to considerable non-monetary relief.
  • Gordon v. Mass. Mutual.  Obtained a $30.9 million settlement, with substantial non-monetary relief, on behalf of 401(k) investors.
  • Beesley v. International Paper. Obtained a $30 million settlement, with significant non-monetary relief, on behalf of 401(k) investors in retirement plan with alleged unreasonable high fees and unsuitable investments.
  • Krueger v. Ameriprise Financial. Obtained a $27.5 million settlement, with significant non-monetary relief, on behalf of 401(k) investors in retirement plan with alleged excessive fees.
  • Sims v. BB&T. Obtained a $24 million settlement on behalf of BB&T retirees and employees in a case alleging BB&T paid itself excessive fees to administer the plan and included underperforming and proprietary funds.
  • Kanawi v. Bechtel. Obtained an $18.5 million monetary settlement with substantial non-monetary relief on behalf of 401(k) investors.
  • Ramsay v. Philips North America. Secured a $17 million settlement in a case alleging excessive fees and retention of imprudent investment options in a retirement plan.
  • Waldbuesser v. Northrop Grumman Corp. Obtained a $16.75 monetary settlement with substantial non-monetary relief on behalf of 401(k) investors.
  • Martin v. Caterpillar Inc. Obtained a $16.5 million monetary settlement with substantial non-monetary relief on behalf of 401(k) investors.
  • Will v. General Dynamics. Obtained a $15.15 million monetary settlement with substantial non-monetary relief on behalf of 401(k) investors.
  • Clark v. Duke University. Obtained a $10.65 million settlement in a case alleging 403(b) plan fiduciaries allowed excessive fees to be charged and imprudent investments included in the plan.

Please do join us for what promises to be an interesting, engaging and thought-provoking event.

There will be a range of stakeholders involved, including some of our Ambassadors and members of our TTF International community. 

We’ll also be touching on a range of insights, ideas and initiatives that are referenced in our new book, entitled

“Why we must rebuild trustworthiness and confidence in financial services; and how we can do it.”

Please get involved and be part of the solution.

Scroll down for further info, speaker details and to make bookings

Who should attend?

This online event will be of particular interest to individuals and organisations that authentically align with the idea that the financial services sector is important and that there is scope fr improvement in how it works.

You can expect to be ‘amongst’ progressively minded and collaboratively minded people.

On the basis that “progress begins with realism” we’ll be running the event as a forum to enable everybody to “say it as they see it.” We will be facilitating the kind of candid yet constructive discussion that is needed to help move matters forward.

We don’t think any one person or organisation has all the answers; and we also think that all answers are worth listening to, so if you’ve got a point of view that you’d like to share, and are keen to hear the views of others, this is definitely an event for you.

This symposium will cover important topics that will be of particular interest to:

  • Litigators
  • Pension lawyers
  • Pension scheme trustees – professional and lay 
  • Chairs of investment committees
  • Governance professionals
  • Investment governance committees
  • Independent non-exec Directors at Asset Managers
  • Consumer groups
  • Think Tanks and Civil Society Groups with an interest in the financial ecosystem
  • Industry Observers, Commentators; the Media in General
  • Policymakers
  • Regulators
  • Politicians interested in the financial services sector
  • Financial Conduct Professionals
  • Risk Management Professionals
  • Compliance Professionals
  • Pension Professionals
  • Financial Planners
  • Fiduciaries
  • Financial Services Trade Bodies and Professional Associations
  • Academics and researchers in the governance, stewardship, ethics, conduct and compliance space; and more

Format

We will be using Zoom, a highly effective online platform which means we can run this symposium as an ultra-convenient and wonderfully efficient event; all this, without you needing to leave your home or office.

You’ll just need access to a computer with Broadband connection. 

We will be structuring the event in such a way that it will be as engaging and as interactive as we can possibly make it. We’ll  be working hard to create as “life-like” an event as possible, with every opportunity taken to create interaction and engagement.

Here’s the programme and timings, so far*

6.00pm BST

Welcome to the symposium, introductions and initial exploration of the main issues; plus “Why we must rebuild trustworthiness and confidence in financial services; and how we can do it” by 

Andy Agathangelou FTTF FRSA

Founder, Transparency Task Force; Governor, Pensions Policy Institute; former Founding Chair, Friends of Automatic Enrolment; former Founding Chair, Association of Member Nominated Trustees.

https://www.linkedin.com/in/andy-agathangelou-0295311

6.15pm BST

Presentation for 30 minutes + 15 minutes Q&A with facilitated discussion, by

Jerry Schlichter

Jerry is Founding and Managing Partner of the US law firm Schlichter Bogard and Denton.

He has been repeatedly elected by his peers for inclusion in “Best Lawyers in America” and “Lawyer of the Year” and is listed in the 2019 edition.

Jerry has been featured in numerous national publications, including the New York Times, Reuters, Bloomberg, USA Today, and the Wall Street Journal, for his and the firm’s success in pioneering claims of excessive fees in 401(K) plans and obtaining precedent-setting results involving claims of excessive fees against large employers, and for the reduction in fees his cases have caused throughout the 401(k) industry.

He and the firm have obtained settlements in these 401(k) excessive fee cases of more than $300 million for employees and retirees, in addition to significant improvements in their 401(k) plans.

In total, this relief has been valued at more than $1.5 billion. He also was lead attorney for the firm in the first and only full trial of an excessive fee case in the country, resulting in a verdict of $36 million. In recent rankings of the most influential people in the 401(k) industry by 401kWire.com, Jerry has repeatedly ranked in the top 5.

https://www.uselaws.com/attorneys/jerome-schlichter/

7.00pm BST

Short leg-stretch and comfort break for 15 minutes

7.15pm BST

Quick-fire round; where selected attendees will have the opportunity to comment on:

“If I just had 3 minutes to say what I really think about whether litigation is a pension saver’s best friend, this is what I’d say…”

Chris Tobe
Chris Tobe is a global   leader in Transparency and fighting Corruption in U.S. state & local government pension plans and investments in general, including state regulated insurance products.
 
He is working on his 5th book on transparency entitled Wall Street Corruption in State & Local Governments targeted to a broad US Audience. This is a related book to Kentucky Fried Pensions 2018 targeted to Kentucky and Public Pensions Secret Investments targeted to Trustees, Staff, regulators.
 
His 1st book “Kentucky Fried Pensions” was cited by Pulitzer prize winner Gretchen Morgenson of the NY Times and Matt Taibbi of Rolling Stone. He has been quoted and works regularly on public pension corruption stories with Neil Weinberg of Bloomberg, David Sirota of YoungTurks, Travis Waldren of
the Huffington Post, and currently Gary Rivlin formerly of NY Times now with the Intercept.
 
His other book “Consultants Guide to Stable Value” is on fixed income 401(k) insurance based investments in the U.S.
 
Chris does legal expert work in the areas of investment corruption and excess fees in both US Public & Corporate pension plans. He also serves as Chief Investment Officer for a  Pension consulting firm out of New Orleans the Hackett-Group where he has provided project consulting to a number of public pensions in MD, NC and TX.
 
Robin Powell

Editor, The Evidence-Based Investor; Executive Director, Regis Media; Executive Director, Ember Television; former Producer, Sensible Investing TV; former Reporter, Sky News; former Reporter, ITV

https://www.linkedin.com/in/robinpowell/

George Mellman
Interim Investments & Financial Planning Consultant, GSM Financial Solution; former Vice President, Institutional Investment Consultant, Fidelity Investments
 

 

Philip Miller

Co-Founder, Fair Return; Ambassador, Transparency Task Force; former Co-Founder & Head of Client Services, Marland Thomas Solicitors; Founder,  Pension Focus; former Consultant – Regulatory Compliance, former Investment Advisor, Alliance & Leicester

https://www.linkedin.com/in/phil-miller-10bb717a/

Paul Secunda

Paul M. Secunda is the author in whole or in part of six books, nearly six dozen law review articles, and other short writings on pensions, employee benefits, labor law, employment law, employment discrimination law, and special education law.

Paul chaired the U.S. Department of Labor’s ERISA Advisory Council to the Employee Benefit Security Administration, and was a Senior Fulbright Scholar in Australia studying that country’s superannuation system. He is an elected member of the American Law Institute, the founder and faculty advisor to the Marquette Benefits and Social Welfare Law Review, and is recognized internationally as an academic thought leader in the field of international and comparative pension law.

Furthermore, as a passionate believer in the need to improve transparency in pension funds, Paul has been co-leading the charge to develop TTF’s International Best Practice Team to address this issue around the world through the creation of a Global Pension Transparency Index.

https://www.linkedin.com/in/paul-secunda-a17228/

Eric Smith

Chairman & CEO, Decision Technologies Corporation; President, Trustee Empowerment & Protection, Inc.; Chairman & CEO, Consulting Services Support Corporation

https://www.linkedin.com/in/eric-smith-82558710/

7.35pm BST

Open discussion and debate

 

7:55pm BST until 8.00pm BST

Final conclusions; suggested next steps and close to the formal proceedings. 

However, for those that want it…

8:00pm BST until 8.30pm BST

…unstructured networking and informal conversation; fireside chat” amongst friends and acquaintances as it were.

 

Please click below to book your place

Once your place is secured, you will be automatically Emailed the details you need to access the event through interactive Zoom – please be sure to enter your Email address correctly. 
 

For any queries please contact us.