Myron D. Rumeld is co-Chair of the Employee Benefits, Executive Compensation & ERISA Litigation Practice Center. He also supervises the bulk of the firm’s employee benefits plan litigation activities in the New York office and has handled a broad array of other labor and employment litigation matters.
In the employee benefits field, Myron has represented both single employer and multiemployer plans, plan fiduciaries, employer contributors to multiemployer plans, and professional advisors to plans. He has had extensive experience in all types of litigation matters, including individual and class action lawsuits alleging violations of ERISA’s fiduciary duty and prohibited transaction provisions, and ERISA’s age discrimination and minimal accrual rules; challenges to plan denials of claims for benefits; suits challenging plan amendments, plan terminations, and the termination of retiree benefits; actions challenging particular plan investment decisions; delinquent contribution claims and withdrawal liability claims brought against employer contributors to multiemployer plans; Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation proceedings; and U.S. Departments of Justice and Labor investigations and lawsuits.
The depth and variety of Myron’s ERISA litigation practice is evident from his recent and ongoing matters, which include the successful defense of two class action lawsuits dealing with breach of fiduciary duty claims against the trustees of 401(k) plans in connection with the plans’ investment in stock of the corporate plan sponsor, one of which was the first such case to reach the Second Circuit Court of Appeals; representing the independent fiduciaries responsible for investigating and prosecuting claims for recovery of many millions of dollars in losses associated with the construction of a hotel owned by a pension fund; and defending several class action lawsuits, including three seeking recovery of interest on delayed benefit payments, two seeking to invalidate a pension plan’s cash balance features and one contending that a multiemployer pension plan’s benefit formula was illegally back loaded.
Among Myron’s earlier achievements was his supervision of a series of lawsuits brought on behalf of the Mason Tenders District Council Trust Funds against various former Fund trustees and service providers. These efforts, combined with his coordination of settlements with the Departments of Labor and Justice, resulted in the recovery of millions of dollars in investment losses that the Funds suffered when they were poorly administered and under organized crime influence.
Earlier in his career, Myron also played a principal role in a series of landmark suits in the Second Circuit concerning fiduciary, co-fiduciary and non-fiduciary liability arising from multimillion-dollar losses in plan investments. Other achievements include the successful management of a series of related lawsuits alleging various breaches of fiduciary duty and prohibited transactions arising from plan real estate investment losses, and the defense of consolidated lawsuits raising novel issues concerning the interplay of ERISA’s delinquent contribution law and the jurisdictional dispute mechanisms in the construction industry.
Outside the field of employee benefits, Myron has had extensive experience in employment discrimination and sexual harassment class actions. He recently settled a class action lawsuit brought on behalf of 2000 railroad employees, alleging racial discrimination in discipline and promotion. The case raised cutting edge issues on the scope of class certification in the aftermath of the Civil Rights Act Amendments, and has led to two precedent-setting decisions by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Earlier in his career, Myron was involved in Meritor Savings Bank, FSB v. Vinson, the landmark Supreme Court decision on environmental harassment, and the successful appeal in a sexual harassment suit against Penthouse magazine that originally resulted in an award of $4 million in punitive damages after trial.
Myron has written and spoken extensively on both employee benefits and employment litigation, and has authored several articles that have appeared in The New York Law Journal and elsewhere. He also is co-Chairman of the Board of Editors for the ABA publication, Employee Benefits Law.