BLOOMINGTON — A Bloomington medical device company is facing a class action lawsuit accusing its retirement plan of charging excessive fees.
Former Cook Medical employee, Drew Mateya, filed the lawsuit on June 27 on behalf of current and former employees.
The federal lawsuit alleges that Cook’s 401(k) plan charged excessively high fees, costing workers considerable amounts of retirement income.
More than 12,000 current and former employees are impacted by the problem, according to Carmel law firm Wagner Reese, which represents Mateya.
Attorney Tim Devereux said employees had no idea this was happening.
“I don’t think the average consumer has the ability to go and look at their documents because the fees are hidden at different levels,” said Devereux. “You don’t often know the fee is improper because it says this Is the fee for this class of shares. “
If the court certifies the lawsuit as a class action, attorneys will have the ability to get the contact information for all potential members of the class from Cook Medical and will notify members, said Devereux.
“People need to know their retirement is going to be there for them when they come to retire, and they’re entitled to the full value of what they should have had,” said Devereux. “That’s all we are seeking in this case. Make these people whole. Put them back into the position they should have been in had you done your job.”
Cook Medical responded to the lawsuit, telling WRTV, “We take our fiduciary responsibilities very seriously and we will defend this lawsuit vigorously."
More than 170 lawsuits have been filed against other companies across the country making similar allegations involving 401k plans, said Devereux.
“For so many hardworking Americans, 401(k)s are the only form of retirement savings they have,” said Devereux. “The idea that 401(k) sponsors have allowed these excessive fees to chip away at unsuspecting people’s retirement savings is unacceptable.”