CIGNA Settles K Plan Co. Stock Suit

August 5, 2005 ( - CIGNA has agreed to settle a lawsuit over the role of company stock in its K plan, the insurer said this week.

Under the settlement pact, the company will pay as much as $950,000 for plaintiffs’ legal fees and as much as $2,000 to each of the two named plaintiffs in the case, the Hartford Courant reported. Other employees won’t get a monetary settlement, but CIGNA has agreed to lift certain K plan restrictions.

Employees sued in 2002 and 2003 after CIGNA’s stock price plunged because many were invested in the shares through the 401(k), and some of those investments were locked in by the plan’s rules not allowing employees to make certain asset transfers.

CIGNA eliminated the transfer restrictions in March that had forbidden participants from transferring assets invested in company shares from the CIGNA match until they were 55 or if they left the company.

The settlement would apply to 34,295 people, according to the Courant report.