Doctor to Get $1M Less in Retirement Than Promised, He Claims
SAN FRANCISCO (CN) – A longtime Kaiser physician will not receive as much as he was promised in retirement benefits the man claims in a complaint filed in United States District Court Northern District of California.
Dr. Robert Behrendt filed an ERISA claim against Kaiser Foundation Health Plan Inc. and Permanente Physicians Retirement Plan For Hawaii Permanente Medical Group.
Behrendt left Kaiser in 2010 after 35 years of service as a Physician and began the process of filing for Early Retirement in 2012.
"Dr. Behrendt logged into the Kaiser Permanente Retirement Center (KPRC) website made available to him by Kaiser several times during 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 to confirm the benefits he would be entitled to," Behrendt says in his complaint.
In 2012, the KPRC website informed Behrendt he was entitled to a lump sum of over $2 million or a single-life annuity of $14,000 if he began receiving benefits in 2015, he says.
Behrendt checked the account several times between 2012 and 2015 and was given similar numbers each time, his complaint states.
"During the course of processing his retirement kit, Defendants for the first time notified Dr. Behrendt the representations made regarding Dr. Behrendt's benefits during 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015 were incorrect," the complaint states.
Behrendt would receive a lump sum of $1.5 million or a single-life annuity of nearly $9,000, significantly less than he was originally promised, the complaint continues.
According to the complaint, Defendants attributed their misrepresentations to a computer programming error.
Believing he would be receiving the larger amount, he allowed his emergency medicine board certification, medical licenses, DEA licenses, and other professional licenses and certificates to expire, quit his jobs, and promised to pay his son's graduate school tuition, the doctor’s complaint states.
The misrepresentations caused Behrendt financial damage, the complaint continues.
Behrendt seeks disgorgement of any profits gained by Kaiser, surcharge of pecuniary injuries as well as attorney's fees and costs and interest.
Behrendt is represented by Joshua Heinlein of Dinsmore & Shohl.