Janesville business ordered to repay 401(k) cash

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Gazette Staff
Friday, April 15, 2011
— The U.S. Department of Labor has obtained a court order requiring a former Janesville business and its owner to return more than $31,000 in employee contributions to their 401(k) plan.

The judgment, entered in U.S. District Court in Madison, resolves a lawsuit against Premier Vending and David R. Biggerstaff, the president and former owner of the company, for violations of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act.

The suit alleged that the defendants failed to remit employee contributions to the plan from Oct. 26, 2007, through Jan. 30, 2009, and to remit contributions in a timely manner from Sept. 1, 2006, through Jan. 30, 2009.

The funds were retained in Premier Vending’s general account and used to pay the company’s operating expenses, the department alleged.

The judgment stipulates that the debt to the 401(k) plan cannot be discharged as part of Biggerstaff’s personal bankruptcy proceedings. Biggerstaff filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy Aug. 24, 2010. The judgment also appoints an independent fiduciary to administer and terminate the plan and bars Biggerstaff from serving in the future as a fiduciary to any employee benefit plan covered by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act.

The settlement orders that $31,204 in voluntary employee contributions—plus lost interest—be restored to the company’s 401(k) plan. The plan now has nine participants and $181,742 in assets.

Last updated: 4:58 pm Thursday, December 13, 2012

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