Welcome to Plasterers Local Union 31
Please choose your jurisdiction:

SECTION 3.0 - ERISA RIGHTS

The Pension Plan is covered by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), a federal law intended to protect employee’s rights under their benefit plans. As a participant, you have certain rights and protection under ERISA.


You may review, without charge, by contacting the Board of Trustees, all supportive documents, including the plan document, the trust agreement, and the annual return/reports filed with the U.S. Government. If you would like copies, you may request them in writing from the Board of Trustees. Copies will be sent to you for a reasonable charge. In addition, you will receive a summary of the annual return/report each year which briefly describes the financial activities of the Pension Plan.


Once each year you may request a statement about the status of your pension under the Pension Plan. The statement will show the amount of your accrued pension and whether you are vested in your accrued pension. The statement must be requested in writing from the Board of Trustees and will be provided without charge.


If your claim for a benefit is denied, in whole or in part, you must receive a written explanation of the reason for the denial. You have the right to have a denied claim reviewed and reconsidered. See the “Claim Appeal Procedures” section of the summary plan description for a more detailed explanation.


ERISA also protects you from being discharged or discriminated against in any way to prevent you from obtaining benefits or exercising your rights under ERISA.


In addition to creating rights for plan participants, ERISA imposes duties upon the people who are responsible for the operation of the Pension Plan. The people who operate the Plan, called “fiduciaries”, have a duty to do so prudently and in the interest of all participants and beneficiaries.


There are steps you can take under ERISA to enforce your rights. For instance:

  • If your claim for benefits is denied or ignored, you may file suit in a state or federal court.
  • If the Board of Trustees fails to provide you with requested documents within 30 days, you may file suit in federal court. The court may require the Board of Trustees to provide the documents and pay you up to $100 a day until you receive them, unless the documents were not provided for reasons beyond the Board’s control.
  • If the fiduciaries of the Pension Plan misuse the assets of the Pension Plan, or if you are discriminated against for asserting your rights under ERISA, you may seek assistance form the U.S. Department of Labor or file suit in a federal court.

In any court action under ERISA, the court will decide who should pay the court costs and legal fees. If you are successful, the court may require the other party to pay those costs and fees. If you lose, the court may order you to pay.


The Board of Trustees is available to answer any questions you may have about the Plan. The nearest office of the Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, is available to answer any questions you may have about your rights under ERISA.