- January 11 2013
We are fighting to restore the full pensions we earned and are entitled to, including any supplement, and complete reimbursement of the amounts our pensions have been reduced, retroactive to when the plan was improperly terminated by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation ("PBGC"), as well as full recovery of our legal costs.
Simply put, we believe the federal government broke the law. We believe the involuntary termination of our pension plan by the PBGC at the direction of U.S. Treasury during its management of GM's bankruptcy followed an illegal process.
Because we had no representation in the closed-door negotiations, legal protections normally available to pensioners were skirted.
Liens on Delphi property that could have protected our pensions were surrendered by the PBGC for minimal value.
The PBGC claimed in 2009 that it had to seize our salaried pension plan, because the plan was "severely underfunded," but an independent study by the respected actuarial firm Watson Wyatt -- information available to the PBGC at the time – indicated that the plan was very adequately funded when it was terminated. After reviewing the Watson Wyatt report, a second actuarial firm, Wells Fargo Company's BPS&M, has since noted that the salaried plan funding level was not only a healthy funding level, but was actually better funded than the average of the 100 largest private pension plans in the United States.
Moreover, what happened to us was unfair: our hourly counterparts represented by the most powerful unions were chosen to be made whole on their pensions and receive monthly "top-ups" from GM (funded by federal taxpayers' TARP dollars).
What happened to us was inequitable: we are the ONLY auto retirees, hourly or salaried, to have worked two thirds or more of our careers for a "Big Three" company to have lost our pensions – in our case up to 70% or more – AND lost 100% of our health care coverage, AND lost 100% of our life insurance.
Life may not treat people fairly and equitably in all cases, but adherence to the law DOES apply to everyone ... even government officials. That's the heart of our lawsuit, and we will never, never, never, never give up until our pensions are rightfully restored.
We will expose all who broke the law if our lawsuit results in a motion for summary judgment or a trial. And we are confident that justice will prevail.
Supporting Data: (click each chart to view)