In the summer of 2016, more than 100 of Cigna’s self-insured health plan clients were sued with the complaint alleging breach of the defendants’ fiduciary duties under ERISA for engaging in widespread fraudulent behavior involving the use of plan funds. This case should serve as a wake-up call for employers sponsoring health plans nationwide — this will not be the last case of its kind to be filed.

The wake-up call has to do with fiduciary duties arising under ERISA. These duties include acting solely in the interests of the participants and beneficiaries and avoiding conflicts of interest; administering the plan in accordance with plan terms (subject to ERISA); acting for the exclusive purpose of providing plan benefits or for defraying reasonable plan administration expenses; and acting prudently.

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