BURNSVILLE, Minn. – A federal district court in Minneapolis has ordered Larry Lauterbach, the president and former owner of Slate Cement Inc., a defunct Burnsville construction company, to restore $17,273.18 in unremitted employee contributions and lost opportunity costs to the company's health and dental plan, and $747.20 in unremitted employee contributions to the company's 401(k) plan.
The order follows a consent judgment resolving a Labor Department lawsuit against the defendants for failure to remit employee contributions to the 401(k) plan, failure to forward employee contributions for health and dental insurance premiums to the medical and dental insurance providers, and co-mingling those contributions with the general assets of the company. The suit alleged that violations of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act occurred between June 2006 and September 2008.
In addition to the restitution, Lauterbach will be enjoined from serving or acting as a fiduciary or service provider to any employee benefit plan subject to ERISA for three years. In a separate Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceeding, he stipulated to the bankruptcy court that money owed to the two plans is not dischargeable.
"The Labor Department's legal action demonstrates an ongoing commitment to protect the hard-earned benefits of American workers," said Steve Eischen, regional director for the department's Employee Benefits Security Administration in Kansas City, Mo. "We will continue to help workers obtain their rightful benefits when fiduciaries fail in their responsibilities to properly administer employee benefit plans."
This case is part of EBSA's national enforcement initiative to safeguard workers' contributions to 401(k) and health benefit plans. The department's legal action resulted from an investigation by EBSA's Kansas City Regional Office and was litigated by the department's regional solicitor in Chicago. Employers and workers can contact the Kansas City office at 816.285.1800 or toll-free at 866.444.3272 for help with problems relating to private sector pension and health plans. Additional information can be found at http://www.dol.gov/ebsa.
Solis v. Larry Lauterbach
Civil Action File Number 10-cv-01739-JNE-FLN
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