Please note: As of January 20, 2021, information in some news releases may be out of date or not reflect current policies.
U.S. Department of Labor Obtains Default Judgment To Restore $65,842 to Defunct Ohio Company Retirement Plan
COLUMBUS, OH – The U.S. Department of Labor has obtained a default judgment requiring Robert Walton, Jr. – CEO of Hadsell Chemical Processing – to restore $65,842 to the Hadsell Chemical Processing Simple IRA Plan after the Department’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) found that Walton, as plan fiduciary, violated the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA).
The default judgment – entered in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, Eastern Division in Columbus – bars Walton from acting as a service provider or fiduciary to any ERISA-covered plan in the future. It also enjoins him from engaging in future ERISA violations.
In approximately February 2017, the Waverly, Ohio-based company ceased operations and filed a petition for bankruptcy in April 2017.
“The default judgment demonstrates that fiduciaries that fail to work solely in the interest of plans and participants will be held accountable,” said Employee Benefits Security Administration Regional Director L. Joe Rivers, in Cincinnati, Ohio. “Fiduciaries that need assistance on proper management of employee benefit plans may contact the Employee Benefits Security Administration for guidance.”
EBSA investigators found Walton withheld voluntary contributions from employees’ pay and failed to deposit funds into the employees’ plan accounts in a timely manner from March 27 through Nov. 20, 2015. Instead, Walton held the funds in the company’s general operating account. The $65,842 that the court ordered restored represents $53,240 in unremitted employee contributions and $12,602 in lost opportunity costs.
ERISA requires fiduciaries operate employee benefit plans solely in the interest of participants and beneficiaries. Employers and workers can reach EBSA toll-free at 866-444-3272 for help with problems related to private sector retirement and health plans.
EBSA’s mission is to assure the security of the retirement, health and other workplace related benefits of America’s workers and their families. EBSA accomplishes this mission by developing effective regulations; assisting and educating workers, plan sponsors, fiduciaries and service providers; and vigorously enforcing the law.
The mission of the Department of Labor is to foster, promote and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.
Scalia v. Robert Walton, Jr., and Hadsell Chemical Processing Simple IRA Plan
Civil Action No. 2:19-cv-00926-EAS-CMV
# # #