Long term disability (LTD) insurance companies are corporations whose goal is profit. You purchased your LTD policy to provide you with crucial income in the event you become disabled. Yet insurance companies repeatedly deny legitimate claims, refusing to pay the benefits you paid for and deserve.
You can fight back when your insurer says no. A complete knowledge of long term disability laws is necessary to effectively pursue these types of claims.
Whether you were already denied disability insurance benefits or are just now starting to apply for benefits, Marc Whitehead & Associates can help. We will demonstrate that you are disabled under the terms of the policy and seek a court order for benefits.
Also, we can help if your payments have been delayed or you have been under-compensated.
Group Disability Insurance as an Employee Benefits Plan
Group disability is a long term disability plan that is typically part of an employee benefits plan offered through an employer. Employer-sponsored group LTD benefits are governed by ERISA law (Employees Retirement Income Securities Act), which is Federal law.
ERISA law in complex and the insurance company’s legal teams are experienced and resourceful. This makes it critical that a denied claimant have qualified legal counsel to fight on their side.
Insurance companies will tell you that you can appeal the disability denial on your own. Misleading appeal forms and vague instructions only encourage the submission of insufficient information from unsuspecting claimants.
Private Disability Insurance Claim
As opposed to group plans, private individual disability insurance policies are not regulated by ERISA. Instead, claim disputes are governed under state insurance contract laws, tort and consumer protection laws much more favorable to the claimant.
If the insurance company unfairly denied your claim, you have a great deal more legal options than claims subject to ERISA laws. Advantages of litigating individual LTD claims are:
- Your case is heard in state court, with decisions based on a jury of your peers (not a federal judge).
- You may have expert witnesses to support your claim.
- You may recover various types of damages from the insurance company.
- You may introduce new, supporting evidence during the trial process.
Your policy is your contract. Depending on the policy terms, you have the right to appeal a claim denial at the administrative appeals level, or you may have the right to take your case to a state or federal court as soon as your claim is denied.
The disability claim is an intensive process requiring medical, financial, work records, evidence and testimony.
The standard used by the court to review a claim denial for private disability insurance policies is preponderance of the evidence. This means you must prove that it is more likely than not that you are disabled.
Our disability attorneys may use discovery to investigate an insurer’s past actions. Have they engaged in widespread harmful behavior toward policyholders? Establishing a “pattern and practice” by the insurer can help prove bad faith and may confirm punitive damages claims.
Your policy and your state’s statute of limitations dictate the deadlines for filing an appeal or a lawsuit. Also your state will have its own disability insurance laws on contract provisions. Successful resolution of policy disputes require a specialized knowledge of law and how the laws are applied from state to state.
Nationwide Representation from Long Term Disability Insurance Claims Attorney
It has become common practice for insurance companies to deny valid disability insurance claims as a means of increasing profits.
Insurance companies that commonly issue disability policies are:
- Liberty Mutual
- Provident Life and Accident Insurance
- John Hancock
- New York Life
- Penn Mutual
- The Hartford
- Colonial Life Insurance Company
- Guardian Insurance
Our disability claim attorneys understand how LTD insurance works and why insurers deny benefits. Our goal is to protect you from abusive denial tactics and recover all long term disability pay you are entitled to. If you were denied disability long term disability benefits, contact us right away.
Becoming disabled can have a devastating financial impact by stripping you of your ability to make a living. When you file a long term disability claim and it is denied, you need strong legal representation to appeal the decision.
What Will A Long Term Disability Insurance Claims Attorney Do For Me?
- Aid you in filing out all insurance company forms
- Evaluate your insurance claim and advise you on long term disability laws and your options
- Review your medical records and make suggestions for any additional testing required to prove your case
- Supplement your claim file with additional medical records
- Obtain medical evidence regarding your disability
Consult with qualified Vocational Experts to get opinion evidence rebutting an insurance company’s denial
- Obtain and develop evidence regarding your “Residual Functional Capacity” that is the key to your disability claim
- File your administrative long term disability appeal when necessary, quickly and effectively
- Correctly calculate your benefits
- File a legal brief arguing the legal, medical and vocational issues in your disability case
- File a lawsuit in Federal Court if necessary
- Conduct discovery in the Federal Court case
- Responding to Motions for Summary Judgment and trying your lawsuit
Consult with us at no charge.
If you have been wrongfully denied LTD benefits, do not sign anything from the insurance company without first consulting with us.
Call 800.562.9830 today to schedule a free consultation to answer any questions you may have about your case.
There is no obligation on your part whatsoever to hire us as your disability insurance attorney. Marc Whitehead & Associates represent individuals nationwide in appealing disability denials, filing initial applications for LTD benefits, and other disability insurance matters.
The majority of our disability insurance claims are handled on a contingency fee basis. That means we don’t get paid until you do.