When you work, you paid for Long-Term Disability benefits. But now, you can’t work and you’re finding out it’s more difficult than you thought to get the LTD benefits you paid for.
Sadly, this is more common than most people realize. You may be concerned you’ll need to borrow money from your retirement to make ends meet without your benefits.
If you can’t work because of back issues, chronic fatigue or any other medical reason, let the Tucson Long-Term Disability lawyers at Ober & Pekas help with your Long-Term Disability case.
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The Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) protects participants in employee pension plans and other benefit plans offered by employers. It governs various types of plans, including defined benefit pension plans, 401k plans and employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs). ERISA covers medical, disability and other welfare benefit programs. If covered under ERISA, you and your beneficiaries may seek relief for breaches of fiduciary duty, denial of benefits or failure to disclose plan terms or benefit changes.
In an ERISA case, you are generally required to exhaust the administrative appeals process before bringing a lawsuit. This means you must appeal directly with the claim administrator. Unlike other areas of the law, the evidence you can present in court is limited to the evidence you submit during your appeal.
Beware of online resources offering advice on appealing your denial of disability benefits, these resources often give incorrect advice about appeals.
If your short or long-term disability benefits were denied, contact Ober & Pekas for a consultation.
Insurance companies deny claims for many reasons. One common reason is the claimant’s purported failure to meet the definition of “disability.” The insurance company will frequently “cherry pick” your medical records, even retaining an “independent” medical reviewer to find against you, despite the fact you have never been personally evaluated by that reviewer.
Don’t give up on your right to your disability benefits. Insurance companies often count on you not fighting for your benefits, thus saving them from paying you for the months – and often years – of benefits to which you are entitled.
Yes. Under most employer sponsored disability plans, you are required to apply for Social Security Disability benefits. Most plans and group disability policies allow the insurance company to reduce your monthly benefit amount by the amount you receive in Social Security Disability benefits. This is so the insurance company can reduce its financial liability and the amount it pays you each month. If you don’t apply for Social Security Disability benefits, the insurance company may have the right to estimate what you would receive in Social Security Disability benefits.
If you’re unable to work due to a disabling condition and have an LTD policy through your employer, or one you purchased, you can file an application for Long-Term Disability benefits. But, fair warning: you’ll be dealing with an insurance company. Most insurance companies will do everything they can to make sure you get none or only a fraction of what you may truly
deserve. The LTD benefits you’re eligible for depend entirely on your policy so be sure to review your policy carefully before filing an application. Better yet, call our Tucson LTD lawyers if you need help applying and we’ll assist you in getting everything organized.
Don’t give up! If your LTD benefits were denied, you can — and often must — appeal.
If you do file an appeal, most insurance companies will attempt to delay and stall the process so it takes longer for you to get benefits. Despite these tactics, success is still possible. If you feel like your life plan has gone off track because you need LTD
benefits, let our attorneys help you get it back on track.
Before you talk to the insurance company, make sure you consult with our Tucson Long-Term Disability attorneys. We’ll go through your policy carefully and give you all of your available options for getting LTD benefits. Call us today to get started.