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Harry v. Screen Actors Guild-Producers Pension Plan

United States District Court, D. Nevada

December 20, 2017

JEROME HARRY, an individual Plaintiff,
v.
SCREEN ACTORS GUILD-PRODUCERS PENSION PLAN, an ERISA Plan; SCREEN ACTORS GUILD-PRODUCERS HEALTH PLAN, an ERISA Plan, DOES 1 -10, Defendants.

          PETERSON BAKER, PLLC TAMARA BEATTY PETERSON, ESQ. BENJAMIN K. REITZ, ESQ. ATTORNEYS FOR PLAINTIFF JEROME HARRY

          FOX ROTHSCHILD LLP MARK J. CONNOT, ESQ. ATTORNEYS FOR DEFENDANTS SCREEN ACTORS GUILD-PRODUCERS PENSION PLAN AND SCREEN ACTORS GUILD-PRODUCERS HEALTH PLAN

          STIPULATION AND ORDER TO STAY PROCEEDINGS

         Plaintiff Jerome Harry ("Plaintiff"), and Defendants Screen Actors Guild-Producers Pension Plan and Screen Actors Guild-Producers Health Plan ("Defendants", and together with the Plaintiff, the "Parties"), by and through their undersigned counsel, hereby stipulate and agree, subject to the Court's approval, to stay this action pending Defendants' administrative review of similar, if not identical, benefit claims to be submitted by Yvette Wilson's daughters, Rachel Wilson and Lauren McClain (the "Daughters").

         In support of the Parties' stipulation, the Parties state as follows:

         1. Courts have inherent power to stay the cases before them as a matter of control over their own dockets and calendars. See Landis v. N. Am. Co., 299 U.S. 248, 254-55 (1936). This power to stay is "incidental to the power inherent in every court to control the disposition of the causes of action on its docket with economy of time and effort for itself, for counsel, and for litigants." Id. at 254.

         2. Plaintiff is the former husband of Yvette Wilson, now deceased ("Yvette").

         3. The Screen Actors Guild-Producers Pension Plan is a pension fund in which Defendant alleges that Yvette was a pensioner prior to her death. The Screen Actors Guild-Producers Health Plan (which merged with the AFTRA Health Fund and is now the SAG-AFTRA Health Plan) is a multiemployer group health plan in which Plaintiff alleges that Yvette was also a pensioner prior to her death. Defendants assert, among other things, that the SAG-AFTRA Health Plan does not provide pension benefits.

         4. Plaintiff filed this action on March 27, 2017 [ECF No. 1], alleging Defendants had failed to pay amounts owed to Plaintiff, as a beneficiary, under the Screen Actors Guild-Producers Pension Plan and the Screen Actors Guild-Producers Health Plan, including, but not limited to, retroactive disability payments. Defendants deny generally the allegations in the complaint.

         5. Yvette left two surviving daughters, Rachel Wilson and Lauren McClain. The Daughters assert that, if Plaintiff is entitled to certain of Yvette's benefits, they too are entitled to benefits.

         6. Accordingly, and although the Daughters believe Plaintiffs unsuccessful efforts to administratively resolve this dispute exhausted their own administrative requirement, the Daughters are formally submitting for administrative review a claim to Defendants for the Daughters' alleged share of their mother's benefits.

         7. Should administrative proceedings fail to resolve the Daughters' claims, the Daughters intend to file suit in this Court. In such an event, the Parties agree that Plaintiffs claims and the Daughters' claims should be litigated in the same action.

         8. Therefore, to avoid duplicative proceedings and potentially inconsistent outcomes, the Parties agree that Plaintiffs case should be stayed until the conclusion of the Daughters' administrative proceedings. Thereafter, if necessary, Plaintiff and the Daughters will take procedural steps needed to consolidate their claims into a single action.

         9. Notwithstanding any stay of these proceedings, the Parties agree that discovery, including through depositions, may be obtained during the stay period from Marvin Snyder in light of Mr. Snyder's advanced age and uncertain health. The Parties' ability to take the deposition of Mr. Snyder is a condition for their agreement to the stay.

         THEREFORE, IT IS HEREBY STIPULATED AND AGREED, by and between the Parties, subject to ...


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