If you have been denied long term disability (LTD) benefits by Dearborn National Life Insurance Company, Marc Whitehead & Associates can assist you.
A denial is not the end of the claims process. When your disability benefits are wrongfully denied, it is vital that you understand your rights and legal options that may enable you to claim the benefits you deserve and desperately need.
Dearborn National provides a broad line of insurance products, including employer-sponsored group insurance, and voluntary group insurance.
Formerly called Fort Dearborn Life Insurance Company, Dearborn’s parent company, Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC), is acclaimed as the largest health insurer in the U.S. that is customer-owned (rather than owned by investors) and the fourth largest in the nation.
Appeal a Dearborn National LTD Claim Denial
How do you appeal the denied claim?
Under a group disability policy, ERISA law requires that all administrative remedies must be exhausted before you may file a lawsuit. This means you must file an administrative appeal to Dearborn National, adhering to strict guidelines and timeframes.
Dearborn National must receive the written appeal within 180 days of the initial letter of denial. Dearborn should re-evaluate your claim within 45 days of the appeal. They may come back requiring more information, extending the decision window to 90 days.
Timing and strategy are of utmost importance. You need an experienced disability lawyer to expertly challenge the denial and prove your claim based on extensive medical, vocational and objective evidence – while navigating Dearborn’s procedures and the laws involved in the type of disability claim you have.
What Else You Need to Know about Dearborn National LTD Claims
Dearborn National’s long term disability program focuses on returning the disabled employee back to work as soon as possible. While a supportive program in many cases, it is also in every insurer’s best interest to get claimants off disability as quickly as possible. This greatly reduces the overall costs to the company.
Dearborn National LTD policies generally require individuals who are totally disabled to file for Social Security disability (SSD) benefits. If your disability prevents you from returning to work, Dearborn National offers free assistance with arranging your Social Security disability.
This sound very helpful. However, your policy likely has an “offset” clause that states once you are approved for SSD, your Dearborn LTD benefits will be reduced by the amount of your SSD benefits. This reduction in LTD benefit payments is called an offset.
Additionally, SSD benefits may take a year or more to be approved. Once they are approved, you receive all the Social Security disability benefit payments that have accrued since the date you filed for SSD. This past due benefit amount generally comes in a lump sum, creating an “overpayment” of total disability benefits.
Once disabled claimants receive their Social Security disability backpay, they are often shocked to learn that the insurance company is entitled to most or all of it. The offset becomes a financial benefit to the insurer, and not the insured.
By giving an insurance company the authority to handle your SSD claim, they are able to take steps to undermine your LTD claim in other ways as well.
There are ways to address these and many other tactics the insurance company uses.
Long term disability attorney Marc Whitehead is Board Certified in Social Security Disability law. Our clients are best served when we combine their SSD and Dearborn National LTD claims and case management.
We understand the differences in the law regulating SSD, the insurance industry, and complex ERISA laws (Employee Retirement Income Security Act) that govern Dearborn National group disability claims.
Our attorneys prepare and present our clients’ Social Security Disability case in the best way to support their LTD case.
If Dearborn National Denied Your LTD Claim – Call Us
Established in 1992 in Houston, Texas, Marc Whitehead & Associates has helped thousands of disabled individuals nationwide to collect long term disability insurance benefits. Let us assist you through this very complex and unforgiving process.
Call us for a prompt, completely free consultation: Toll Free at 800-562-9830.
When you struggle with disability, not only must you deal with pain and suffering, you lose income and the ability to support your family. Legal fees are inconceivable during this time in your life.
Marc Whitehead & Associates represents our clients on a contingency basis, meaning we do not receive attorney fees until we obtain a settlement for you.