Sapp v. Liberty Life Assurance Company of Boston

Filing 31

MEMORANDUM OPINION. Signed by District Judge Liam O'Grady on 9/28/2016. (awac)

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IN the united states district court FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF VIRGINIA Alexandria Division MARKSAPP, Civil No. l:16-cv-105 Plaintiff, Hon. Liam O'Grady V. LIBERTY LIFE ASSURANCE COMPANY OF BOSTON, Defendant. Memorandum Opinion This dispute arose when PlaintiffMark Sapp sued Liberty Life Assurance Company of Boston ("Liberty") under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 ("ERISA") seeking long-term disability (LTD) benefits due to him under the terms ofhis employee benefit plan. Because Liberty did not reasonably consider and evaluate the evidence ofMr. Sapp's job description inits determination ofMr. Sapp's "Own Occupation" and its subsequent denial of Mr. Sapp's LTD benefits. Liberty's abused its discretion under the Policy. Therefore, for the reasons thatfollow, Mr. Sapp's motion for summary judgment is granted and Liberty's crossmotion for summary judgment is denied. I. BACKGROUND Mr. Sapp was employed with Republic National Distributing Company ("Republic") asa wine salesman. Republic categorized Mr. Sapp's position as "Sales Representative—^Retail"

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