Disability insurance riders are additional coverage you buy to add to your privately-purchased base policy. Riders can affect your ability to collect full benefits if you become disabled.
Even so, insurance companies may still deny a valid claim no matter what coverage you have paid for under the policy. There’s no guarantee that, because you have added a rider to your LTD policy, your claim will result in the award of benefits associated with that rider.
Disability policies are inherently complicated. In fact, sometimes by adding further benefits and exclusions through riders, the policy becomes even more baffling.
Your private insurance policy is a legal contract between you and your insurance company. Disability insurance riders are part of that contract. Your insurer is bound by law to act in good faith and deal fairly with you in the investigation of your claim, and the prompt payment when a claim is legitimate.
If your insurer denied benefits unfairly, call us.
We will help you examine the denial letter and decipher the language and intent of the base policy and the riders. It is the only way you can be sure of your options, and know what you can legally do to build a strong case to fight back and beat the denial.
When insurers sell intentionally confusing policies, engage in unreasonable delay, or use unfair claim handling practices or other unreasonable acts, they are acting in bad faith.
What Can Go Wrong?
It is common for insurance policies to be improperly interpreted by the claims reviewer, whether by design or by error. Claims handlers and reviewers are not attorneys. We have handled many cases where the reviewers misinterpret the language found in our clients’ policies, not to mention parsing the disability insurance riders tacked on at the end.
Our experience is that there are insurance providers who will routinely and unreasonably deny legitimate claims. These insurers work within a system designed to wear you down by drowning you in paperwork or by resorting to aggressive denial tactics such as surveillance, or using in-house medical staff to build a case against you.
Insurance carriers also take advantage of an insured’s misunderstandings—their lack of knowledge of policy language and insurance law. These companies also reckon that a person dealing with disability has neither the stamina nor the ability to contest a denied claim.
Our National Disability Lawyers Will Help You Fight Bad Faith Insurance
The team at Marc Whitehead & Associates protects the rights of disability insurance policyholders throughout the United States. Our attorneys are dedicated to fighting for each client aggressively and professionally with all our might.
Let the insurance company know that they cannot run over you. Contact us right away for assistance in any disability claim disputes or questions. There is no cost or obligation for a claim evaluation with us.
Examples of Disability Insurance Riders that Expand Coverage
Insurance companies offer different riders which can be added to a policy. Various riders may be important for your situation, and many others may not fit your needs.
Listed below are a few common disability insurance riders offered by most providers. Each rider covers a specific risk associated with being disabled.
- Cost of Living adjustment (COLA) – disability benefits increase over time to adjust for the effects of inflation.
- Non-Cancelable and Guaranteed Renewable Rider – This provision guarantees that, once the contract is in force, the insurance provider cannot raise your premiums, alter your monthly benefits, or change the policy benefits to age 65 or other certain age, or life. The rider ensures that if your income is for some reason reduced, you are still covered by the total disability benefit. The rider also ensures portability, meaning if you change jobs, the coverage follows you, even if you enter into a far more dangerous occupation, or a lower paying occupation.
- Guaranteed Insurability Option – You have the right to buy additional insurance protection (increasing the disability benefit amount) at established future dates, without being subject to medical underwriting. This is also referred to as “Future Increase Option” rider.
- True “Own-Occupation” Total Disability – Total disability is specific to your own specific occupation. You are considered totally disabled when injury or illness prevents you from being able to perform the duties of your own occupation. You are able to receive your full disability benefits, even if you are gainfully employed in another occupation.
- Partial Disability Rider – If disability prevents you from going back to work on a full-time basis, partial disability insurance riders allow you to return to work part-time and receive partial benefits.
- Residual Disability Rider – Suppose you experience a loss of earnings due to illness or injury, yet you are not totally disabled and still gainfully employed. Residual disability insurance benefits would correspond with your loss of earnings with the intent to restore your income as much as possible. You must of course demonstrate the loss of income is a residual effect of the disability. While you are not totally disabled, this rider lets you to transition back into the workforce, allowing time for physical and occupational rehab if needed. Some residual riders will pay benefits even if you are working full time.
- Catastrophic Disability Rider – The most severe disabilities can cause extraordinary financial hardship. Catastrophic disability benefits provide additional monthly coverage if you become so severely disabled by accident or illness that you cannot perform basic activities of daily living.
Ask Us About Your Claim Today.
See how we ease your burden and increase your chances of receiving the disability benefits you deserve.