Allstate Retiree Life Insurance Benefits Lawsuit

Former Employee Agents

Allstate Retiree Life Insurance Benefits Lawsuit


Allstate Insurance Company Sued by Company Retirees
Sept. 30, 2013, press release, Heninger Garrison Davis, LLC

BIRMINGHAM, Ala., Sept. 30, 2013 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ — Allstate retiree Garnet Turner is suing the insurer to protect the life insurance benefit he claims he was promised. Turner, a resident of Montgomery, Alabama, and a 32–year veteran Allstate agent, was notified by Allstate in July that the benefit would be cancelled in 2015.

Turner, who retired in the 1990s, filed suit after receiving that news. He is represented by the national law firm Heninger Garrison Davis. HGD partner Lew Garrison blames the company for trying to boost its bottom line on the backs of retirees. “Allstate should not profit from broken promises to its most productive and important employees,” he said. “These folks worked hard for years and sold a lot of Allstate policies, and they rely on the company to maintain the retirement benefits promised.”

Turner began working for Allstate as an agent in 1963 and received several awards and honors over the decades. On retirement, as a benefit, he was promised a $90,000 life insurance policy for the rest of his life, at no charge to him, according to his attorneys.

The cancelation of the benefit coincides with a cost-cutting campaign by Allstate. The Chicago Tribune, in a report in July, the same month Allstate notified Turner, called the cost-cutting a top priority of the company. Turner’s attorneys filed the suit in response. It is a class action for all retirees affected.

More is at stake than a broken promise, the attorneys say. Retirees like Turner, in view of their age, likely cannot get replacement insurance. HGD attorney Taylor Bartlett, who also represents Turner, explains: “Based on Allstate’s promise, Turner and other retirees chose not to purchase fixed-cost life insurance at a younger age when such insurance was reasonably priced. These retirees cannot find life insurance today at reasonable rates and may be forced out of their coverage as a result.”

More information on the suit may be found on the Chicago Tribune webpage, at  and at

Turner’s suit is Turner v. Allstate Insurance Co., 2:13-cv-00685-MEF, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama.

Heninger Garrison Davis is headquartered in Birmingham with offices in Atlanta, Los Angeles, New Jersey, New York and Washington, D.C. and focuses on Business Litigation, Class Actions and Mass Torts, Intellectual Property and Personal Injury. Please visit to learn more about the firm.
SOURCE: Copyright (C) 2013 PR Newswire. All rights reserved

CASE UPDATES: Please read from bottom to top for a chronology of case updates; most of the following are excerpts from the website which is maintained by the plaintiff attorney.

UPDATE: 05/17/2023: We invite you to read this brief. It chronicles the history of the case and presents our arguments why we believe the order by Judge Marks is tainted and should not stand. 

UPDATE: 10/1/2017: The court has not yet ruled on briefs submitted by both sides regarding class certification.

UPDATE: 12/1/2016: The case has been set for trial on February 26, 2018 in Birmingham, AL. The Uniform Scheduling Order notes several important dates for 2017, including motions for class certification which must be filed by May 18, 2017.

UPDATE: 9/27/2016: Heninger Garrison Davis, LLC has announced that the Federal District Court for the Middle District of Alabama has denied defendant Allstate Insurance Company’s motion to dismiss the Turner Plaintiffs’ Complaint. The Court’s order is located here. Accordingly, the case will proceed. The case is actively in discovery.
Related media coverage: Allstate Can’t Nix Retirees’ ERISA Lawsuit Over Lifetime Benefits

Allstate ceased paying for retiree life insurance benefits for all unnamed Plaintiffs effective January 1, 2016.

UPDATE: 12/29/2015: The Court issued an order granting the named Plaintiffs in the Turner and Klaas actions preliminary relief. The Court limited this preliminary relief to the 17 named Plaintiffs listed in the Second Amended Complaint. The Court denied the preliminary relief as to unnamed Plaintiffs. Read the order here.

UPDATE: 11/18/2015: Plaintiffs filed a preliminary injunction asking the Court to order Allstate to continue paying their promised life insurance benefits until the case is resolved. The motion for injunction and the motion to dismiss are set for hearing before the court on December 18, 2015 in Montgomery, Alabama.

UPDATE: 8/20/2015: A similar case, filed in Florida by a group of former home office employees who had accepted Allstate’s Special Retirement Opportunity (SRO) offer in 1995, has been consolidated with Turner.

UPDATE: 09/30/2014: Plaintiffs file Second Amended Complaint.

If you or someone you know are being affected by Allstate’s decision to cancel its promised retiree life insurance benefits, you may want to contact the law firm directly for more information.  This lawsuit may include agents, claims and other employees retired since 1990.

To learn more, go to or contact: 

Taylor Bartlett
Heninger Garrison Davis
2224 First Avenue North
Birmingham, AL 35203
205-326-3336 / Toll Free: 800-241-9779

NAPAA has provided this notice for informational purposes only. The contents of this notice should not be construed as legal advice or an endorsement from NAPAA or its attorneys, and NAPAA expressly disclaims any such advice.

The views expressed by NAPAA, or any of its positions relative to its activities and those of its members’ actions on behalf of this organization, are expressly those of NAPAA, and do not reflect the views or opinions of Allstate Insurance Company, or any of its affiliates.


Agent Pension Plan Information for Former Allstate Employee Agents

Former Employee Agents

Agent Pension Plan Information for Former Allstate Employee Agents

Nancy Fish,


For the most part, Allstate stopped hiring employee agents in 1990. Then in the year 2000, the company terminated all its remaining employee agent contracts, except for those located in certain jurisdictions, such as the state of New Jersey.

At the time, the company had 6,171 employee agents who were affected by the “Preparing for the Future” initiative, wherein agents were allowed to continue their careers only if they agreed to become independent contractors and suffer the loss of their employee benefits.

Most of those affected were over the age of forty. Of the 6,171 affected agents, 3,772 converted to the EA agreement and continued their agency relationship; 2,399 selected another option, and parted ways with the company. Virtually all 6,171 employee agents were vested in the Allstate Agent Pension fund at the time their employment contract was severed, and many of those are now approaching retirement age.

Vesting in the pension plan required a minimum of five years as an employee of Allstate. Employment at Sears prior to 1995 could also be counted towards vesting eligibility for Sears employees who left and became Allstate agents. Vested former employee agents who were not yet 65 when employment ended became “terminated deferred vested Participants.”

Who is eligible to withdraw benefits under the plan?

Normal retirement age is 65. Agents hired before 1989 are eligible to receive early retirement benefits payable at age 63. In addition, agents with 20-plus years of continuous employment can receive early retirement benefits at age 55.

Early retirement benefits – paid prior to age 65 – are calculated at a reduced amount based on your actual age.

Current Allstate Exclusive Agent independent contractors can take their retirement benefits as soon as they are eligible based on age and years of employment. In other words, you may collect your benefit while still under contract as an EA independent contractor agent.

The deferred vested benefit is payable as an annuity. While several annuity payout options are available, it is important to note that monthly payout amounts are “frozen” and will not change as the participant ages. Currently, a lump-sum payout option is still available,  but the plan is under no obligation to continue it. The lump sum is calculated by applying a conversion factor – which includes interest rate and mortality assumptions – to the straight life annuity benefit. Consequently, the benefit amount under the lump sum option may increase or decrease depending on the prevailing assumptions in effect at the time a lump sum is requested.

The Pension Protection Act (PPA) of 2006 changed the interest rate used to calculate lump-sum payouts of the Agents Pension Plan from the 30-year Treasury Bond Rate to a corporate bond segmented yield curve. As a result, there is no longer a single interest rate used for lump-sum payments. As a general rule, if the average interest rates decrease, the lump sum equivalent increases, and vice versa.

If you receive your pension benefit in a lump sum, you can “roll” it into an IRA to maintain the tax deferred status. This must be a direct transfer or the Agents Pension Plan will withhold 20% of the payout for income tax purposes.

Social Security offset

Agents who became participants in the plan prior to Dec 31, 1988 should be aware that pre-1989 benefits contain a Social Security offset which is calculated based on estimated compensation earned from 1951 through 1988.

You have the option of having your actual compensation from 1951 through 1988 – as recorded by the Social Security Administration – used in the calculation instead of your estimated compensation. Using your actual compensation in the calculation of your pension benefit may produce a higher pension benefit. More importantly, using your actual prior compensation will never result in lowering the pension benefit you are entitled to receive and will not affect the Social Security benefit you are eligible to receive.

You can obtain your actual 1951 through 1988 earnings history by requesting your “Social Security Statement” from the Social Security website at or by contacting your local Social Security office. The information is free of charge. Remember to request your “Social Security Statement,” not your “Detailed Earnings Information.”

Then you must forward your compensation history to the Allstate Benefits Center before requesting the distribution of your pension. The Allstate Benefits Center must receive your compensation history no later than four months from your Payment Start Date.

Death Benefit

If you die as a terminated deferred vested participant, a death benefit will be payable to your spouse or other designated beneficiary. Participants should be sure all beneficiary information is up to date.

Estimated Death Benefit Amount

Your estimated death benefit amount – stated as a lump sum form of payment – is payable if you die before commencing payment of the Plan benefit. You can access your estimated death benefit amount – calculated as of the prior yearend – by calling the Allstate Benefits Center at 888-255-7772, where you will be connected to an automated system. Following the prompts, select the “Retirement and Investments” option and then the “Pension” option. You will then be connected with a benefits representative who will assist you with your request.

The value of your estimated death benefit could increase or decrease from time to time because the interest rate the Plan uses to calculate lump-sum benefits fluctuates over time.

Eligible agents can learn more about retirement benefits at the Your Benefits Resources™ website at  or by calling the Allstate Benefits Center at 888.255-7772. By creating a log-in, agents can view the Summary Plan Description, project retirement benefits, compare the payout options, and start the pension payment process.

Ef Spring 2013

The views expressed by NAPAA, or any of its positions relative to its activities and those of its members’ actions on behalf of this organization, are expressly those of NAPAA, and do not reflect the views or opinions of Allstate Insurance Company, or any of its affiliates.


Former Employees Benefits Information

If you were an employee with Allstate and vested in the Agent Pension Plan, Deferred Compensation Plan or Profit Sharing Plan, information is available on the following website:


Here are a few things you can learn about your pension on the Hewitt website:

1.   What is the earliest date you can receive your pension?
2.   Calculate your pension benefit by selecting your retirement date; view and compare payout options.

  • Straight Life Annuity.
  • 50% Joint and Survivor Annuity
  • 100% Joint and Survivor Annuity
  • Life and Ten-Year Certain Annuity
  • 50% Contingent Annuity
  • Ten-Year Certain and 50% Joint and Survivor Annuity
  • Lump sum

3.  View balances and manage your Profit Sharing Plan or Deferred Compensation Plan account.                         


  • See how your Pension Benefit is calculated pre 1988 and post 1989
  • Withdraw or roll over your money
  • Check fund performance
  • Change your beneficiaries
  • Get investment advice
  • Understand Social Security benefits
  • Summary Plan Descriptions and Benefits Manuals for:
    1. Pension Plan
    2. Group Medical for Former Employees
    3. Deferred Compensation Plan
    4. Profit Sharing Plan

Your Pension Death Benefit:  To find the amount your beneficiary will receive, call 1-888-255-7772. You will need the last 4 of your social security number, your date of birth, and your password (the same one you use on the  Hewitt website). Select Pension, then Death Benefit.

Correcting the Social Security offset prior to your pension start date could increase your pension benefit. Read Agent Pension Plan Information for Former Allstate Employee Agents.

Related: Allstate Sued by Company Retirees for Canceling Life Insurance Benefits