Many people will be injured in accidents or will contract illnesses, leaving them disabled and unable to return to their jobs for extended periods of time. In order to protect themselves from financial ruin in the case of a career-ending injury or illness, it is common for workers to purchase long-term disability insurance, which can provide a financial lifeline to the policyholders. At Osterhout Berger Disability Law, our experienced disability lawyers proudly help our clients in Sarasota, Florida with their long-term disability claims.
Appealing a Denial
Receiving a denial notice from your long-term disability insurance company can be devastating when you have become disabled. It is important for you to understand that insurance companies commonly deny the initial claims, so you should not give up. Instead, pay attention to the information that is contained in your letter. The notice will explain why the insurance company denied your claim, and it will outline the process that you must go through in order to appeal the decision. Pay attention to that process and the deadline for filing your appeal. If you miss it, you will be barred from ever collecting benefits from your company based on your condition. You should also note that your appeal must be made within your company’s own established appeals process. You cannot file a lawsuit against your company until you have exhausted all of the available remedies within the company.
What to Do and What to Avoid
There are some common mistakes that you should avoid during your appeal as well as some things that you should do. Don’t immediately send off an appeal when you receive your letter. You should instead contact your company and request a complete copy of your file. When you receive it, take it together with your policy to be reviewed by an experienced lawyer at Osterhout Berger Disability Law. Inside of your file, there will be all of the evidence that the insurance company gathered in order to make its decision.
Another error that some people make when they are appealing a denial of their long-term disability insurance claims is to stop attending their medical appointments. Some people who have intractable conditions stop getting medical care because they think that it is pointless. Seeing your doctor regularly and adhering to his or her treatment recommendations provides evidence that your disability should warrant an approval of your claim. You should try to stack your record with as much supportive evidence for your claim as you can. If you do exhaust your company’s internal appeals process, the only evidence you will be able to use in a subsequent lawsuit will be whatever you have in your file with the company. Throughout your appeals process, keep oral communications about your claim with the company to a minimum, conducting as much of it as possible in writing. In order to document the fact that you have sent documents, make sure to do so using return receipt, certified mail, and keep copies of all of the correspondence that you send and receive.
Getting the Benefits you Deserve
In order to heighten your chances of success, it is important for you to retain the services of a knowledgeable disability attorney at Osterhout Berger Disability Law. Even if you are just at the beginning stage and preparing to file your initial benefits claim, you may find it beneficial to get our help with your initial claim. Our attorneys understand the types of evidence that insurance companies find important when they are considering claims for long-term disability insurance benefits.
Our attorneys may ask you to help with your claim by attending additional examinations and completing some objective medical tests. We do this in order to help you stack your file with evidence that is favorable to your claim. It is also very important that you are always honest and don’t exaggerate the symptoms of your condition. While some people believe that doing so will help them, insurance companies easily identify malingering. If the company believes that you are less than honest about your condition, it is unlikely to approve your claim. Contact the experienced team at Osterhout Berger Disability Law today to schedule your consultation.