Grifols Shared Services North America Inc. will pay $1.45 million to settle a lawsuit filed by an employee who accused the company's 401(k) plan of violating ERISA due to excessive record-keeping fees as well as failure to consider replacing its record keeper and managed-account services provider.
The terms were announced Aug. 31 in settlement document filed by lawyers for the plaintiff and defendants in a U.S. District Court in Los Angeles. The parties reported an agreement in principle in June, but they didn't reveal settlement terms at that time in the case of Gruber vs. Grifols Shares Services North America Inc. et al.
The plaintiff sued the drug company and its 401(k) plan fiduciaries in April 2022. Fidelity Investments, the record keeper, and Strategic Advisors Inc., the managed-account services provider, were not defendants.
"Each defendant denies each and every allegation of wrongdoing made in the complaint and contends that it has no liability in the action," the settlement document said. "Each defendant specifically denies the allegations that it breached any fiduciary duty or any other provisions of ERISA" in the management of the plan.
The class-action settlement covers participants and beneficiaries of the retirement plan from April 19, 2016, up to the court's preliminary approval of the agreement. The settlement was reached via assistance of a mediator.
The Grifols Employee Retirement Savings Plan, Los Angeles, had assets of $1.2 billion as of Dec. 31, 2021, according to the latest Form 5500.