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in a unanimous opinion, the court vacated a ruling by the 9th Circuit that the “treating physician rule,” which accords special weight to the opinion of a Social Security disability claimant’s treating physician, applies to disability determinations under employee benefit plans covered by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act. Black & Decker Disability Plan v. Nord, No. 02-469. Remanding the case, the court said that the act doesn’t require a plan administrator to accord special deference to a treating physician’s opinion. Ginsburg delivered the court’s opinion.

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