Langbein On Deferential Review Under ERISA
Thanks to Mark DeBofsky for bringing to my attention a law review article recently published in the Northwest University Law Review by John H. Langbein. You can find it at this link and I’ve also placed it in the website library so you can access it here.
Langbein’s article is as concise yet thorough a discussion I’ve seen regarding the Supreme Court’s error in allowing plan administrators to insert self-serving boilerplate language in plan documents to trigger an extremely deferential “arbitrary and capricious” standard of review. It is must reading. As Prof. Langbein notes, the abuses of ERISA insureds by UnumProvident in recent years makes clear that an arbitrary and capricious standard of review, together with a lack of meaningful remedies under ERISA, invites insurers to engage in bad behavior.