Withrow v. Bache Halsey Stuart Shield, Inc., No. 09-55024 (9th Cir. 2011)Annotate this Case
Plaintiff appealed the district court's dismissal of her ERISA, 29 U.S.C. 1001 et seq., action against defendant as not timely filed. Plaintiff was employed by defendant as a stockbroker in 1979 and starting in 1982, plaintiff had been disabled periodically from her employment. Plaintiff applied for long-term disability benefits around January 15, 1987. The court held that plaintiff's claim did not accrue in 1990 with regard to the ERISA statute of limitations, as the district court found, but rather accrued when her claim was finally denied on January 14, 2004. Therefore, plaintiff's action, filed on February 16, 2006, commenced within the four-year statutory limitations period for ERISA claims. The court also held that the limitations provision in the policy here did not apply to disability cases in which the claimant contested the amount of benefits or claims that the benefits have been miscalculated. Accordingly, the court vacated the judgment of the district court and remanded for further proceedings.