Settlement restores most slashed benefits to GM retirees

Class action suit launched after company cut healthcare and life insurance benefits during economic downturn
By Jeffrey R. Smith
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 10/01/2014

General Motors of Canada (GM) has reached a settlement with more than 3,200 retired employees after it was faced with a class action suit in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, restoring benefits cut by the automaker following the 2008 recession.

GM provided post-retirement benefits to its employees for a long time. These benefits included healthcare and basic life insurance benefits, which were outlined in numerous documents such as information brochures and booklets — there was no single benefits agreement — that indicated employees could count on a core of benefits for their lifetime. Employees also received follow-up life insurance notices from GM outlining their amount of continuing life insurance for the rest of their life.