Three former credit union employees and a retiree sued the $1.5 billion Credit Union Retirement Plan Association, CURPA, claiming it has been saddled with what their attorneys described as outrageous fees, excessive recordkeeping and administrative expenses. They also claimed CURPA’s alleged mismanagement cost the retirement plan and its 21,000 participants millions of dollars. About 96 credit unions and five other credit union organizations, including CUNA, the Cornerstone Credit Union League, the New York Credit Union Association, Georgia Credit Union Affiliates, LSCU Services Corp. and the World Council of Credit Unions are employer participants, according to the 2020 Form 550 that CUPRA filed with the IRS and the U.S. Department of Labor.

CURPA’s attorneys have asked U.S. District Court Judge James D. Peterson in Madison, Wis., to dismiss the case, arguing that the lawsuit’s key premise is fundamentally flawed because it is comparing CURPA’s fees and expenses to fees and expenses of other unrelated retirement plans sponsored by single employers.

“The (CURPA) Plan is not a single employer plan. It is a multiple employer plan or MEP,” CURPA attorneys wrote in their answer to the lawsuit. “The Plan, while sponsored by one entity is comprised of over 100 different participating employees of whom sign separate agreements to participate in the MEP. The differences between a MEP, like this Plan, and the single employer plans Plaintiffs use as a benchmark make those comparisons completely inappropriate.”

Peter Strozniak

 

Credit Union Times

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