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Class Action Filed on Behalf of Non-Union Home Care Workers Alleges ERISA and New York Wage Parity Violations

On November 28, 2018, Levy Ratner and Feinberg Jackson Worthman & Wasow filed a class action on behalf of Plaintiffs Ynes Gonzalez de Fuente, Mariya Kobryn, and Ivan Kobryn in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York against, among others, Preferred Home Care of New York, Edison Home Health Care, and Healthcap Assurance, Inc., under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (“ERISA”) and the New York State Home Care Worker Wage Parity Law (“Wage Parity Law”).  The plaintiffs seek to represent a proposed class of approximately 4,000 home health aides. The complaint alleges that Preferred and Edison created a single employer welfare benefit plan for the purpose of appearing compliant with the Wage Parity Law, while actually evading its requirements and misappropriating ERISA-protected Plan assets.  Through this scheme, over a two-year period, the complaint alleges Preferred and Edison purported to set aside approximately $35.5 million dollars into the Plan, but in fact paid out less than $10 million towards employee health benefits.  Instead, as alleged, Preferred and Edison concocted a plan to retain millions of dollars of Plan assets for themselves and/or their principals, in violation of the Wage Parity Law and ERISA’s fiduciary and prohibited transaction rules.

The Putative Class Action Complaint can be downloaded here. See an article by Bloomberg Law News here.

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