A recent first impression decision rules that the common law "mailbox rule" applies to a participant's submission of a benefit election under an ERISA plan. The participant's claim that the document was dropped into a mailbox creates a presumption that the document was timely mailed and received.
Source: Schikore v. BankAmerica Supplemental Retirement Plan, 2001 WL 1222395 U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (9th Cir. 2001). Howard Pianko, Epstein Becker & Green