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Spencer Hoff is a young college student with a diagnosis of congenital cerebral palsy with spastic quadriplegia. He is non-ambulatory and has used a power wheelchair for years. The power wheelchair is Spencer’s means of mobility, independence, and freedom.

Spencer is a productive and independent college student because of the power wheelchair with a joystick to drive the wheelchair and eye gaze technology that allows him to communicate using a computer.

When Spencer’s power wheelchair became broken and unrepairable, he requested UMR for a replacement based on his health benefit plan with Fidelity Investments. In a stunning decision, UMR denied Spencer’s request for a new power wheelchair.

UMR now wants Spencer to use a manual wheelchair which he cannot operate on his own and requires him to rely on other people to push his wheelchair. UMR’s decision has irrationally taken away Spencer’s mobility and independence and should be immediately reversed.

Read the full complaint filed on 10/19/2022 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (“ERISA”) involves employee benefits under an employee benefit plan regulated and governed under ERISA. Our ERISA lawyers are recognized nationally for their expertise in skillfully handling complex appeals and litigation across the nation. If you are facing a battle for your benefits to be honored, contact our law firm to see if you have a case we can help you fight. Complete our online form or call us to get started!

To reach Elizabeth K. Green, Esq., partner attorney at Kantor & Kantor, LLP, for further comment, email her at