David R.  Johanson

Hawkins Parnell Files Appeal in Ninth Circuit to Recover Fees from DOL in ERISA Fiduciary Case

July 26, 2022 – Press Release

July 26, 2022 (Honolulu, HI) – Hawkins Parnell & Young filed a brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit to recover attorneys' fees and defense costs on behalf of an engineering firm and the selling shareholders after winning a landmark trial last year against the U.S. Department of Labor and the Employee Benefits Security Administration. The complete victory in the U.S. District Court for the District of Hawai'i followed a seven-year investigation of a $40 million stock sale into an employee stock ownership plan and trust. Senior Judge Susan Oki Mollway found Hawkins Parnell's clients in full compliance with ERISA and rejected the DOL's fiduciary claims and strategy of legislating ESOPs through litigation.

Hawkins Parnell lead trial counsel David R. Johanson and Douglas A. Rubel filed the brief for Brian J. Bowers, Dexter C. Kubota, and Bowers + Kubota Consulting Inc. They are assisted by local counsel William M. Harstad of Carlsmith Ball LLP.