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When To Hire An Attorney

ERISA § 104(b)(4), 29 U.S.C. § 1024(b)(4) states, “The administrator shall, upon written request of any participant or beneficiary, furnish a copy of the latest updated summary, plan description, and the latest annual report, any terminal report, the bargaining agreement, trust agreement, contract, or other instruments under which the plan is established or operated.”   In addition to the specific documents described in the ERISA statute itself, at ERISA § 104(b)(4), 29 U.S.C. § 1024(b)(4), such as the summary plan descriptions and other documents under which the plan is operated, the ERISA statute, at § 109(c), 29 U.S.C. § 1029(c) provides that the Secretary of Labor may also prescribe what other documents should be furnished.  Thus, reading sections §109(c) and 502(c) together, along with ERISA § 505, 29 U.S.C. § 1135 (allowing the Secretary to “prescribe such regulations as he finds necessary or appropriate to carry out the provisions of this title”), the Secretary is given authority to establish the format and content of what documents are required to be produced by an administrator in an ERISA matter.  The Secretary of Labor's ERISA claim procedures regulations, set out in 29 C.F.R. §  2560.503-1 (h)(2)(iii), describe what documents an administrator must provide.  The regulations state that, in order to provide a full and fair review, the Plan must provide that a claimant shall be provided, upon request and free of charge, reasonable access to, and copies of, all documents, records, and other information relevant to the claimant's claim for benefits.


Seth has always been compelled to excel, whether it meant earning his Eagle Scout as a teenager, participating in theater, debate and varsity football in high school, his Rhodes Scholar candidacy in college, or opening his own law firm. He also perseveres in situations others might shy away from, whether it involves sky-diving, rappelling down a mountain, white-water rafting, participating in marathons and triathlons, writing a novel, or lecturing nationally to large audiences about the vagaries of ERISA.


Seth is committed to serving disabled individuals. He is proud of his work in prominent organizations such as the American Association for Justice (AAJ), the Tennessee Bar Association (TBA) and Hospice. Seth is past-Chair of both AAJ's & TBA's Disability Law Sections, past-President of the Chattanooga Trial Lawyers Association, a 2-time recipient of the Pro Bono Excellence Award, and a 7 year member of the Board of Directors for Hospice of Chattanooga.