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Employee Benefits Security Administration

Archived News Release — Caution: Information may be out of date.

Media Release

Release Date: 11/02/1999
Release Number: 00-02
Contact Name: Gloria Della
Phone Number: 202.219.8921

Seafarers Union In Puerto Rico Sued For Retaining Welfare Contributions

The U. S. Department of Labor has obtained a consent order requiring the Seafarers International Union of Puerto Rico, the Carribbean and Latin America to repay $374,729, plus interest, to its welfare plan as repayment for improperly retained employer contributions owed to the welfare plan.

According to a lawsuit filed simultaneously with the order, the union failed to forward to the welfare plan contributions paid by employers over the period 1976 to March 1997. The union allegedly retained the money for its own uses.

The welfare plan provides health and other benefits to eligible participants. As of Dec. 31, 1995, there were 646 eligible participants and the welfare plan had net assets of $249,965.

The lawsuit and consent order were filed on Oct. 15 in federal district court in Hato Rey, Puerto Rico. The order was entered on Oct. 22. This case resulted from an investigation conducted by the Miami District Office of the Atlanta Region of the department’s Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration into alleged violations of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act.

(Herman v. Seafarers International Union of Puerto Rico, the Carribbean and Latin America)
Civil Action No. 99-2164

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Archived News Release — Caution: Information may be out of date.