Tibble V. Edison International Case Summary

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In a unanimous decision, the U.S. Supreme Court in Tibble v. Edison International held that plan fiduciaries owe an ongoing duty to review plan investments periodically to ensure compliance with their obligations under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (“ERISA”).
In doing so, the Supreme Court reversed the Ninth Circuit’s holding that the statute of limitations for challenges to the continued offering of an investment option begins running only at the time the investment option is selected by an ERISA plan fiduciary (absent a change in circumstances), but stopped short of defining any specific obligations apart from a “continuing duty to monitor investments and remove imprudent ones.”
Since 1999, Edison International and its related benefits and investment committees
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The Supreme Court Decision
On several occasions, the Supreme Court has stated its view that ERISA jurisprudence is derived from the common law of trusts. The Supreme Court faulted the Ninth Circuit for failing to adequately consider principles of trust law when it rejected the Employees’ claim for breach of fiduciary duty with respect to the mutual funds added in 1999. Not only is there a duty of “prudence” to select appropriate investment choices at the outset, but the Court held that there is a “continuing duty” to monitor those investment selections to “remove imprudent ones.”
The Supreme Court held that the “continuing duty” is separate from the initial duty to choose investments carefully; violation of the “continuing duty” counts as a breach of the fiduciary duty under ERISA. As long as the breach of the “continuing duty” occurred within six years of the filing of the lawsuit, ERISA’s statute of repose does not bar the

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