Status of our Fight for our Pensions

    Updated February 1, 2019
We have begun another new year, but with more certainty than ever that we'll prevail.  We now know what happened in 2009 between the PBGC and U.S. Treasury's Auto Task Force.  We have data from the government and credible actuarial professionals that reveals our pension plan was better funded than the PBGC has publicly alleged.  Judge Tarnow asked us to show that the PBGC's termination of our plan was not warranted, and we've done that.  And with case law and undisputed facts, we've shown in our Motion for Summary Judgement that the PBGC broke the law.  The assets of our plan, which were seized by the PBGC in 2009 when the Dow was below 10,000, have grown considerably since then.  There's more than enough money to pay everyone the pensions they earned.
After nine years in our lawsuit against the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, the DSRA on September 21, 2018, filed its Motion for Summary Judgment with the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, Southern Division.  Senior U.S. District Judge Arthur J. Tarnow has scheduled a hearing in Detroit on March 6, 2019 at 2:30 PM.
Our motion is more than 150 pages, accompanied by some 150 exhibits – over 800 pages in all.  It details the most compelling evidence we’ve gathered – much of it from the government after several judges ordered it to do so.  Our Motion is also bolstered by considerable research of case law by our legal team.  It asserts that there is no need for a trial because the preponderance of the evidence proves that the PBGC terminated our pension plan illegally.  Based on the strength of our evidence, we believe the judge will have sufficient grounds to order the PBGC to restore our full pensions – retroactively.  The Court is now able to begin reviewing the material.
Separately, on December 5, 2018, DSRA received the last of several thousand documents that U.S. Treasury fought for six years to deny us because it claimed they were protected by the either the deliberative privilege, or the presidential communications privilege.  But in the end, we won every document we sought that was relevant to our lawsuit against the PBGC.  It took a six year legal action against Treasury before U.S. Federal District Judge Emmet Sullivan in Washington, D.C., who issued several orders during the period that supported our subpoena of the documents.
During the nine years of our lawsuit’s discovery phase, U.S. taxpayer-paid lawyers in the Department of Justice took advantage of every procedural roadblock the law allows to deny us emails and other evidence that are relevant proving to our case.  But our legal team prevailed, winning hundreds of thousands of documents (totaling two million pages) from the PBGC and U.S. Treasury.  Virtually every ruling by Federal judges in Detroit, Cincinnati, and Washington during these nine years supported our assertion that we were entitled to the documents.
Powerful evidence that support all four counts of our lawsuit was revealed in the PBGC and U.S. Treasury documents.  Now, we look forward to the hearing Judge Tarnow has called in Detroit on March 6, 2019.