United States District Court, C.D. California
FINDINGS OF FACT AND CONCLUSIONS OF LAW 
D. WRIGHT, II UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
Chad Amerine brought this action against DSW, Inc., and DSW,
Inc. Benefit Plan (collectively “Defendants”)
under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974
(“ERISA”) to recover damages for the denial of
health insurance benefits under a group health insurance plan
(the “Plan”) established and funded by
Defendants, of which Amerine is a plan participant. He seeks
reimbursement for the costs associated with a cochlear
implant, which Defendants claim was not medically necessary,
under the terms of the Plan.
10, 2017, after briefing by the parties, the Court ordered
that this case would be governed by the abuse of discretion
standard of review. (Order, ECF No. 29.)
February 5, 2018, the parties simultaneously moved for
judgment in advance of the bench trial scheduled for March
13, 2018. (Mot. for Judgment, ECF No. 30; Pl.'s Tr.
Brief, ECF No. 31.) After each party filed a responsive
brief, and the parties stipulated to the documents comprising
the administrative record, the Court issued a Minute Order
requesting the parties to respond if they thought oral
argument would be productive. (Min. Order, ECF No. 35.)
Having heard no response, the Court took the matter under
submission on March 8, 2018, and determined the matter
suitable for decision without oral argument. Fed.R.Civ.P.
78(b); C.D. Cal. R. 7-15. For the reasons discussed below,
the Court concludes Defendants did not abuse their discretion
in denying Amerine the benefits he sought, and
GRANTS Defendants' Motion. (ECF No. 30.)
FINDINGS OF FACT
Amerine, a California resident, was an employee of DSW, Inc.
DSW, Inc. Plan is an ERISA employee welfare benefit plan that
provides health insurance benefits to DSW's employees.
Amerine was covered by the Plan.
Plan is self-funded.
Defendants designated UMR, Inc. (“UMR”), a
division of UnitedHealthcare, to provide administrative
services, such as processing and adjudicating claims
according to the terms of the Plan. (Administrative Record
(“AR”) 214; 218-19, ECF No. 32.)
Under the Plan, UMR is named as Third Party Administrator for
Plan reserves “full and discretionary authority”
for the Plan Administrator and Third Party Administrator to
interpret the plan documents and make benefit determinations.
Plan requires that covered services must be “medically
necessary.” The Plan defines “medically
health care services provided for the purpose of preventing,
evaluating, diagnosing or treating an Illness, Injury, mental
illness, substance use disorder, condition, disease or its
symptoms, that are all of the following as ...