In an ERISA decision that could prove to be worth more than $10 million, a federal judge in Philadelphia has ruled that chemical manufacturer Hercules Inc. of Wilmington, Del., must recalculate the lump-sum pension benefits it paid to retired employees, and it must also revise the formula it will use for employees who have yet to retire.

In a pair of lawsuits — one of which is a class action — Hercules workers complained that the company violated their rights when it revised the method it used to calculate the “present value” of a retiring worker’s initial lump-sum payment.

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