The state’s eleven Billion dollar lawsuit to help cover the shortfall in the Public Employees’ and Teachers’ retirement system will go to trial next summer. A Juneau Superior Court judge has denied a motion by Mercer, Incorporated, to dismiss the case.
The Alaska Retirement Management Board claims that Mercer, the company that was providing the state with actuarial services at the time the shortfall appeared, should be held responsible for much of the current deficit in the retirement system. And the lawsuit charges malpractice, breach of contract, breach of professional duty fraud and misrepresentation. Claiming actual damages of two point eight Billion dollars, the suit also asks for an award of treble damages, punitive damages and interest.
In its motion to dismiss the case, Mercer said the state had not linked any specific charge with a specific amount of damage – and points out that the state didn’t even take the advice they gave at the time.
In rejecting the motion, Judge Patricia Collins, said
there may be difficult questions of proof as to the alleged damages.
However, she continued, the state is charging conduct that – if proven — could support an award in the case.
The case goes to trial on July sixth next year in Juneau.