It’s often difficult to get approved for long-term disability benefits for HIV/AIDS. There are many reasons why these are denied. If an insurance company has denied your claim for LTD benefits due to HIV/AIDS, ERISA and other federal and state laws give you the right to appeal this denial.
You only have a limited time in which to appeal the insurance company’s decision. Contact Marc Whitehead & Associates without the delay. The disability benefits attorneys at Marc Whitehead & Associates have helped disabled individuals all over the U.S. get the benefits they deserve, even after their initial claims were denied.
What Is HIV?
HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) is a virus that attacks the body’s immune system. The only way for a person to know for sure they have HIV is to get tested. If not treated, HIV can develop into AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome). There is currently no effective cure for HIV. Once people are infected with the HIV virus, they carry it for life. However, with proper medical care, the symptoms of HIV can be controlled.
HIV is a progressive disease. People often don’t realize they’ve been infected. The early symptoms of an HIV infection are similar to those of the flu, including fever, chills, aches, etc. Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome is the final and most severe phase of HIV infection. The immune system is so compromised that the individual is susceptible to a wide range of serious illnesses and infections, including tuberculosis, pneumocystis jiroveci pneumonia, cancer, and meningitis.
Insurance Companies Often Deny Long-term Disability Claims for HIV/AIDS
Insurance companies often delay and deny long-term disability benefits for HIV/AIDs. They do so in hopes of discouraging applicants from seeking the benefits they deserve. The most common reasons they give for denying a claim include:
Subjective limitations clauses.
Symptoms like pain and fatigue are disabling, but hard to establish with diagnostic evidence. Without hard medical evidence to support your claim that you are unable to work because of your HIV-related pain and fatigue, the insurance company will likely deny your claim.
Your HIV is a preexisting condition.
HIV is a progressive disease. Its effects become more severe over time. It may be years before your symptoms become disabling. The insurance uses this as an argument that your HIV is a preexisting condition and not covered by the terms of your policy.
In order to have your claim approved, you’ll have to be able to provide solid medical evidence showing the progressive worsening of your symptoms and how they impact your ability to work. This includes objective data such as your medical history, clinical test results, and lab reports as well as an opinion from your treating physician discussing your symptoms and their diagnosis of disability.
You May Qualify For Other Benefits
In addition to LTD benefits, you may also qualify for disability benefits through the Social Security Administration or Veterans’ Affairs. To obtain SSA disability benefits, you’ll have to show that the severity of your symptoms meets the requirements as listed under Section 14.11 of the SSA’s Bluebook of Adult Impairments. To obtain VA benefits, you’ll have to show that your HIV/AIDS is service-related.
Get Help Winning Long-term Disability Benefits for HIV/AIDs
If an insurance company has denied your HIV/AIDS LTD benefits claim, it’s important to take immediate action to protect your rights. ERISA and other laws establish strict deadlines for filing an appeal. The sooner you call Marc Whitehead & Associates the better.
Marc Whitehead & Associates will be able to help you collect the evidence you’ll need to demonstrate the disabling impairments caused by your HIV and ensure your claim gets a fair and honest consideration by the insurance companies. We’ve prevailed against the biggest insurance companies in the world, including Liberty Mutual, Prudential, the Hartford, and Aetna to name a few.
Don’t let the insurance company discourage you. Contact the law offices of Marc Whitehead & Associates at (800) 562-9830 to schedule a free, initial consultation with an experienced long-term disability attorney.