NY judge: Kodak can end retiree health benefits

Updated: 11/05/2012 5:05 PM KSTP.com

(AP) ROCHESTER, N.Y. - A bankruptcy court judge will allow Eastman Kodak Co. to end retiree health benefits at the end of the year as part of its restructuring.

In his ruling Monday, U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Allan Gropper called the move fair and reasonable.

The Rochester-based photography company reached an agreement last month with a court-appointed committee of retirees to eliminate its current $1.2 billion liability for medical, life insurance and survivor benefits. In exchange, Kodak will pay a total of $650 million in claims and $7.5 million in cash into a fund to be used for future payments.

A statement from Kodak on Monday says the agreement will reduce one of the company’s biggest legacy liabilities and marks a major and necessary step toward its emergence from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

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