Jean Tomasco's practice involves employer counseling and employment litigation, with an emphasis on ERISA and benefits litigation.
Ms. Tomasco represents insurers, managed care organizations, and employers in benefit claims litigation, including retaliatory discharge claims and claims brought against plan fiduciaries. She represents plan administrators and insurers in enforcing plan and policy terms and recovering overpayments. Ms. Tomasco has advised a number of clients on ERISA preemption of state laws and counsels clients regarding COBRA and other employee benefits issues. Ms. Tomasco also has advised insurers and managed care organizations regarding the drafting and interpretation of various plan provisions. She has extensive experience in managed care contracting, including the drafting of self-funded plan administration agreements and delegated vendor arrangements.
In addition, Ms. Tomasco represents employers before state and federal courts and administrative agencies, including the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities. She has defended employers against all types of employment-related claims, including discrimination and wrongful discharge claims. Ms. Tomasco also counsels employers on a variety of employment matters, including hiring practices, termination of employees, employment-related immigration issues, unemployment compensation issues, wage and hour matters, drug testing, and personnel policies and handbooks.
- Connecticut Bar Association, Labor and Employment Section, 1991 to present
- Defense Research Institute, Life, Health, and Disability Committee, 1991 to present
- American Bar Association, 1991 to present, Labor and Employment Law and Tort Insurance Practice Sections
- American Health Lawyers Association
- Human Resource Association of Central Connecticut (HRACC)
- Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM)
- Represented leading disability insurer in what is believed to be the first reported federal court decision in the U.S. granting summary judgment based on an insured's failure to obtain surgery, which was viewed as a violation of the appropriate care requirement. The court held that insured's refusal to obtain release surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome was a violation of the unambiguous policy provision to seek and accept appropriate medical care for his disabling condition.
- Defended a plan sponsor and retirement plan against a claim for additional pension benefits by a plan beneficiary. We prevailed on summary judgment.
- Successfully defended a health insurer against a claim for psychiatric benefits. The case concerned the application of a preexisting condition exclusion and a contractual limitation period, as well as ERISA preemption of state law claims. We prevailed on summary judgment.
- Represented an employer in a case involving a claim for long-term disability benefits by a former employee. The employee withdrew the claim after we moved to dismiss on the ground that the employer was not a plan fiduciary.
- Successfully defended a financial institution and its pension plan against a claim by plan participants for additional retirement benefits. The case involved an issue of first impression concerning the effect of a retroactive amendment to the plan and whether the plan was in operational compliance with the applicable laws. We prevailed on summary judgment at the District Court level and the decision was affirmed by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.
Publications & Presentations
- "ERISA Health Plans: Changes and Challenges in the Fiduciary Arena," co-authored with Virginia E. McGarrity (11/2011), published in Payors Plans & Managed Care
- "Beware of COBRA's Bite: COBRA's New Notice Requirements" (Fall 2004), published in CBA Labor and Employment Law Quarterly
- ERISA Survey of Federal Circuits (2005 edition), published by ABA Publishing, Tort & Insurance Practice Section, Health and Disability Insurance Law Committee, contributing author
- "2012 Employment Law Roundup," co-presented with Nicole A. Bernabo and Andrea Donovan Napp (11/15/2012), webinar
- "Managing a Mobile Workforce: Complying with Wage and Hour Laws and Protecting Company Interests," co-presented with Stephen W. Aronson (5/25/2011), webinar
- "ACO Liability and Risk Management Issues: The Managed Care Perspective," co-presented with Theodore J. Tucci, Michael J. Kolosky (5/2011), webinar
- "Defining, Counting, and Recording Hours Worked" (10/21/2008) presented at Connecticut Business & Industry Association's Wage & Hour Conference
- "Common Benefits Mistakes (and How to Minimize Risk)" (2/28/2008) presented at the Hartford Chapter of W.E.B. (Working in Employee Benefits), a group of benefits professionals
- "Defining, Counting, and Recording Hours Worked" (9/18/2007) presented at Connecticut Business & Industry Association's Wage & Hour Conference
- "The Firing Block: Strategies to Prevent Lawsuits Arising from Termination" (5/16/2007) presented at a two-day seminar, "Recent Developments in Employment Law 2007," sponsored by Council on Education in Management
- "FMLA Problem Areas," co-presented with Attorney Heidi Lane of Connecticut Department of Labor (6/2006) at CBIA's Human Resources Conference
- "Critical Documentation for Payroll Managers" (12/2005) presented at CBIA's Payroll Management for Connecticut Businesses Conference
- "Guidelines for the Generation, Retention, and Destruction of HR Records in an Increasingly Electronic World," co-presented with Stephen W. Aronson (6/2005) at CBIA's Human Resources Conference
- "COBRA Compliance Update" (5/2005) presented at a Lorman Education Services employee benefits seminar
- "COBRA, FMLA and USERRA" (4/2005) presented at CBIA's Compensation & Benefits Conference
- "COBRA and ERISA: An Update for HR Professionals" (6/2004) presented at CBIA's Human Resources Conference
- "Evaluating Risk in Employee Benefit Plans" (4/2004) presented at Human Resources Council of CBIA
3.25.13, Jean Tomasco Presents Webinar for HR Professionals
2.25.13, Jean Tomasco Interviewed for CBIA's Business Minutes
2.13.13, Jean Tomasco Presents Update on Employment Law to CBIA's HR Council
12.28.12, Attorneys Present Webinar About Data Security and Privacy from Employer's Perspective
7.11.12, Labor & Employment Attorneys Discuss How to Navigate the Hiring Process
6.15.12, Robinson & Cole Attorneys Win False Claims Act Cases
11.11.11, Employment and Benefits Attorneys Publish ERISA Health Plan Fiduciaries Article
6.08.11, Robinson & Cole Attorneys Present Webinar on Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs)
6.03.11, Labor and Employment Attorneys Discuss Legal Considerations of Telework Arrangements
12.15.10, Health and Benefits Litigators Win "Appropriate Care" Disability Insurance Case
10.29.08, Robinson & Cole Attorney Presents at CBIA Conference
4.01.08, Robinson & Cole Attorney Speaks on Benefits Issues