Providence, R.I., Retirees Sue over Retiree Health Care

November 15, 2013 ( – Dozens of retired firefighters and police officers are suing the city of Providence, Rhode Island, to contest pension reforms that would adversely affect their benefits.

Sixty-six complaints were filed in Rhode Island Superior Court in October, says a news report on The retirees who filed them seek to prohibit the city from implementing reforms that could suspend and reduce, on a retroactive basis, “certain vested retirement benefits of already-retired Providence public employees.”

According to the news report, health care benefits are affected. Specifically, the complaints center around certain retirees being required to enroll in Medicare, with city-sponsored health benefits being discontinued. The problem, say the affected retirees, is that they are being charged late enrollment penalties and paying significantly more for medical care.

The complaints have been consolidated under Andrews et al. v. Lombardi. The counts within include breach of contract and challenges to the medical enrollment statute.