News Brief

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Company owner restores more than $59K to Approved Products Inc. 401(k) Savings Retirement Plan in Fairfield, Ohio, following fiduciary breach

Date of Action: July 27, 2015

Type of Action: Complaint, Consent Order and Judgment

Names of Defendants: Marcia Langenecker, individually and as fiduciary of the Approved Products Inc. 401(k) Savings Retirement Plan; Approved Products Inc.; and Approved Products Inc. 401(k) Savings Retirement Plan

Allegations: In a complaint filed in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, the U.S. Department of Labor alleges that from June 3, 2011, to Nov. 7, 2014, Marcia Langenecker, the president and owner of Approved Products Inc. and the trustee of the Approved Products Inc. 401(k) Savings Retirement Plan, and the company failed to remit employee payroll deferrals and participant loan repayments to Nationwide Financial Services, the plan’s asset custodian. These monies remained commingled with the general assets of the company and were used for the company’s general operating expenses.

The Fairfield, Ohio-based company operates as a specialized contractor providing testing, adjusting and balancing services for commercial/industrial heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems. As of May 31, 2015, the plan had seven participants and $407,520.95 in assets.

Resolution: A complaint was filed in U.S. District Court on July 23. The complaint sought restoration of losses, including lost opportunity costs, stemming from the fiduciary breaches by Langenecker and Approved Products Inc. The complaint also asked the court to permanently enjoin and restrain the defendants from violating provisions of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, permanently enjoin Langenecker from serving or acting as a fiduciary or service provider to any ERISA-covered employee benefit plan in the future, and appoint an independent fiduciary to properly administer the employee benefit plan.

A consent order and judgment was filed on July 27, in which Langenecker agreed to restore $59,708.46 to affected participants, mostly through an offset of her own participant account balance. This figure includes $15,939.40 in lost opportunity costs. Additionally, the defendants were permanently enjoined from violating ERISA, Langenecker was permanently enjoined from serving or acting as a fiduciary or service provider to any ERISA-covered employee benefit plan in the future, and an independent fiduciary was appointed to properly administer the employee benefit plan.

Court: U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio (Cincinnati)

Docket Number: 1:15-cv-00490

U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at www.dol.gov. The department’s Reasonable Accommodation Resource Center converts departmental information and documents into alternative formats, which include Braille and large print. For alternative format requests, please contact the department at (202) 693-7828 (voice) or (800) 877-8339 (federal relay).

EBSA News Brief: 
07/28/2015
Contact Name: 

Scott Allen

Phone Number: 
Contact Name: 

Rhonda Burke

Phone Number: 
Release Number: 
15-1498-CHI