Sam Petsonk Celebrates Early Win as He Prepares for Trial Representing West Virginia Miners in Benefits Claim

Sam Petsonk (‘13), Owner of Petsonk PLLC, was quoted in Law360 celebrating “great news” regarding his representation of West Virginia miners in Fitzwater et al. v. Consol Energy Inc. et al., following U.S. District Judge John Copenhaver Jr.’s ruling that Consol must face the suit’s central allegation: that the company violated ERISA’s code of conduct for benefit plan caretakers (“Consol Can’t Shake Central Claim In Lifetime Benefits Suit,” Oct. 23). Sam asserted that his clients’ lawsuit “stands for a powerful proposition: that it is against the law for a company to mislead workers into taking nonunion jobs based on lies that the retirement benefits will be better than the union’s. This was a wall-to-wall union company back in the 1980s. But after opening some nonunion mines, Consol ‘lured people into those mines with blatant misrepresentations, time and time again, that those miners would have better benefits than the [union workers].’ If that doesn’t breach your duty of loyalty to your employees, what would?”