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ISSAQUAH LAW GROUP

Issaquah Law Group: Experienced Counsel; Client Focus

PHILOSOPHY: Formed in 2014, Issaquah Law Group is a law firm with one focus: providing businesses and insurers with high quality legal representation with the responsiveness of a smaller firm. ILG was founded on the principle that strong client relationships are the key to successful legal representation and strong relationships are built upon clear and consistent communication. 

LITIGATION: We work closely with our clients to fully and accurately understand their goals, work collaboratively to formulate specific legal strategies, and execute the agreed plan of action utilizing methods most likely to result in the efficient and effective resolution of the matter. ILG attorneys have a broad base of litigation experience to draw on in all Federal and State courts from on-the-ground investigations to Supreme Court appeals in the areas of personal injury and wrongful death, product liability, commercial general liability, labor & employment, construction litigation, and catastrophic losses due to fire and explosion.

BUSINESS LAW: Rarely is the path from point A to point B a straight line, so our role in a business law practice is to find alternatives, devise workable strategies, and keep your business ideas, goals and objectives moving toward realization. ILG’s business attorneys help clients achieve their goals with respect to business formation, intellectual property, labor and employment, CAN-SPAM, copyright and trademark

COMMUNITY: In addition, the Lawyers at Issaquah Law Group remain active in the legal and civic community. A core commitment of our Issaquah Attorneys is community service. Our attorneys' civic involvement includes the King County Civil Rights Commission; the City of Issaquah Planning Policy Commission; the Northwest Screenwriters Guild, service as a pro tem judge. We live and work in the Pacific Northwest, and we aim to make it a better place.

In addition, through The Amateur Law Professor Blog and LinkedIn postings, we share pertinent opinions and decisions of the Washington State Supreme Court, as well as the pertinent opinions and decisions of the Washington State Courts of Appeal so that our clients can be as update to date on cutting legal issues as we are.

WA Legal Roundup - Washington Supreme Court

McAllister v. City of Bellevue Firemen's Pension Bd.

In calculating excess payments payments under LEOFF, you have to first assess the benefits that the firefighters would have been due under their pre-LEOFF plan. The city accidentally calculated those payments as to what they would be due under LEOFF, rather than what would have been due under their old plan. The difference lies in the fact that contributions were capped under the old plan at Battalion Chief, whereas LEOFF has no such contribution cap. This resulted in retirees above Battalion Chief getting excess money. The city noticed and recalculated, not asking for return of overpayments. The appeal by McCallister argued that the city was doing it right all along. Unfortunately for McCallister, the city was right to modify the way it does things:

To ensure that LEOFF remained consistent with Bakenhus, the legislature enacted RCW 41.26.040(2), which guarantees that "a fire fighter who retires under LEOFF will not suffer any diminution in the benefits that would have been available if LEOFF had not been enacted." . . .

RCW 41.26.040(2) provides:

Any employee serving as a law enforcement officer or firefighter on March 1, 1970, who is then making retirement contributions under any prior act shall have his membership transferred to the system established by this chapter as of such date. Upon retirement for service or for disability, or death, of any such employee, his retirement benefits earned under this chapter shall be computed and paid. In addition, his benefits under the prior retirement act to which he was making contributions at the time of this transfer shall be computed as if he had not transferred.

(emphasis added). Under the plain language, this means computer under the old system, subtract LEOFF payments, and the city is responsible for the difference.

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