KENNESAW, Ga. – The U.S. Department of Labor has obtained a court order requiring the Hoyla Insurance Group Inc. and owner Michael Hoyla to restore $77,470.48 to the former company's 401(k) retirement plan.
Following an investigation by the Labor Department's Employee Benefits Security Administration, the department filed a lawsuit alleging that the defendants violated the Employee Retirement Income Security Act by comingling employee contributions with company funds.
This default judgment resolving the department's lawsuit removes the defendants as fiduciaries of the plan and appoints Larry Lefoldt as the independent fiduciary to administer the plan's assets. It was entered by the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia-Atlanta Division.
"The U.S. Department of Labor will not allow fiduciaries to profit from the improper conversion of retirement assets, and this judgment reinforces our commitment to protect assets rightfully belonging to plan participants and beneficiaries," said R.C. Marshall, EBSA's regional director in Atlanta, Ga.
The insurance agency ceased operations on Sept. 6, 2006, after the Georgia Department of Insurance issued a cease and desist order. Michael Hoyla was charged with 19 counts of theft, and in November 2009 he pleaded guilty in the Superior Court of Cobb County to converting for his personal use more than $65,000 in employee contributions owed to the plan for the period of 2002 to 2006. Hoyla was sentenced to five years in prison followed by 15 years of probation.
The 401(k) plan covered seven participants and had $140,895.12 in assets as of Dec. 16, 2007, the latest data available.
The investigation was conducted by EBSA's Atlanta Regional Office. Employers and workers can reach the Atlanta office at 404.302.3900 or call EBSA toll-free at 866.444.3272 for help with problems relating to private sector retirement and health plans. For more information, see http://www.dol.gov/ebsa.
Solis v. Hoyla Insurance Group Inc.
Civil Action File Number 1:09-cv-00315-JEC
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