Actuary Liability - Dismissal

Mr. Wright and Ms. Meade handled this actuary liability case where all claims, totaling $51 million in alleged damages, were dismissed after a four-day trial. Their client, an actuarial firm, was accused of breach of duty in regard to the management of a pension plan with $400 million in assets. The plaintiff maintained that the actuary should have advised more conservative investments because the investors were maturing and should have advised not to implement additional benefits to the plan because they were too expensive. Mr. Wright and Ms. Meade successfully countered that the actuary did not have a duty to advise more conservative investments and had adequately advised as to the issue of benefits.

After obtaining a favorable verdict, Mr. Wright and Ms. Meade successfully defeated an appeal to the Fifth Circuit. On appeal, the plaintiffs-appellants argued that the lower court erred procedurally when it dismissed the defendants' Rule 52(c) motion, and granted in favor of the plaintiffs before the defendants' argued their case in chief. The plaintiffs further argued that the lower court failed to conduct a proper comparative fault analysis under Louisiana law, and thus, the defendants should have been assigned some degree of fault. The Fifth Circuit affirmed, finding that both of the plaintiff-appellants' arguments on appeal failed.