January 31, 2017 – The latest example of Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) industry litigation targets Aon Hewitt for, in the words of plaintiffs, permitting excessive fees to be paid and then taking kickbacks.
The challenge was filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division. Lead plaintiff Cheryl Scott commenced the action on behalf of herself and similarly situation participants in the Caterpillar 401(k) Retirement Plan. Named as defendants are a number of Aon Hewitt companies, including Aon Hewitt Financial Advisors, Hewitt Financial Services and Hewitt Associates.
According to the text of the complaint, Scott is a retiree and a participant in the Caterpillar plan, while defendant Hewitt Associates serves and has served as the recordkeeper. Another provider, Financial Engines, is also named in the text of the suit but is not actually challenged as a defendant.
The central claims in the proposed class action suggest plaintiffs feel they overpaid significantly for the services provided by Financial Engines, with the excess payments essentially amounting to kickbacks returned to defendant Hewitt.
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