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PBGC moves to take over Dewey & LeBoeuf's pension plans

PBGC moves to take over Dewey & LeBoeuf's pension plans

WASHINGTON—The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. said Thursday that it intends to take over and terminate three underfunded pension plans sponsored by financially ailing law firm Dewey & LeBoeuf L.L.P. in New York.

The PBGC said it is acting “to secure its ability to collect against the firm's affiliates that share funding responsibility for the pension plans.” The PBGC set a termination date of May 11 for the plans.

The plans are underfunded by more than $80 million and have nearly 1,800 participants. A breakout of the plans' assets and liabilities and the amount of benefits that would be guaranteed by the PBGC was not immediately available.

In a notice to plan participants, PBGC said “it is taking this action because your plan meets the criteria for termination under federal pension law. In general, this means that your employer is unable to keep up the plan and the plan may not have enough money to pay all the promised benefits. PBGC has determined that the plan should terminate as of May 11, 2012.”

The law firm, once renown for its insurance industry practice, has suffered mass defections of top partners in recent weeks to other firms.

A spokeswoman for the New York law firm did not respond for comment.

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