long term disability benefits

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Benefits for cancer patients under 65

Does applicant…

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currently receive disability?
expect to be out of work for 12 months?
have an attorney helping with the case?
receive doctor's treatment in past 6-12 months?

Long Term Disability Benefits: When Do You Need A Lawyer’s Help?

Long term disability benefits can be difficult to get even when you’ve been paying into the system. Once you begin to think you need help, you’re already likely feeling betrayed. Who would you trust now if you can’t even trust a system that is designed to make you safe?

In an article entitled “Why Long-Term Disability (LTD) Applications Get Denied”, Nolo Press explains it well:

“Employer-provided long-term disability (LTD) policies are governed by a federal law known as ERISA, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act. Under ERISA, disability applications are evaluated by claims administrators usually working for your insurance company. Due to the inherent conflict of interest, claims administrators routinely deny deserving claims even where the evidence of disability appears to be clear.” –

Long Term Disability Benefits: How a Lawyer will Help Your Case

Here are some ways a lawyer who has focused his or her practice on disability could help you with your case:

  • SUFFICIENT MEDICAL RECORDS: Having sufficient medical records is key. Sometimes your insurance carrier will be missing crucial medical records and deny your claim. You can be sure you have not only gone to a physician regularly, and an experienced attorney who handles disability claims regularly will know check and be sure your insurance carrier has all records.
  • DOCTOR’S STATEMENTS: Doctor’s statements are perhaps the most important. Did your doctor continually chart “doing well” or “doing better” when you were still disabled? Your doctor may not realize the chart is going to be read by an insurance company. And while you may be doing well compared to before, if you’re still disabled, you should make sure your doctor points that out in the records each time you visit. Your experienced lawyer will look at your case in it’s entirety and help ensure you have the best possible case.
  • YOUR CARRIER’S DEFINITION OF DISABILITY: Your insurance carrier has a specific definition of what’s allowable. Your attorney will help ensure you understand what is in those guidelines. Often these guidelines are written in very detailed language (usually these contracts are originally written by a lawyer). Your attorney, who works in this area of the law, will know how to read and comprehend the language in your policy. He or she will look to understand what is allowable in your case.
  • MISSED DEADLINES: Your attorney will make sure you don’t miss any deadlines when it comes to appealing your claim. If you miss a deadline, you often are not allowed to sue the insurance carrier in federal court because you have failed to “exhaust your administrative appeals”. Under ERISA law, the Federal court system is limited to evaluating and considering only evidence contained in the administrative record. An experienced attorney will know what should be in the administrative records to help ensure you have the best case.

Long Term Disability Benefits: How to Choose An Attorney

Make sure that your attorney has focussed his or her practice on Long Term Disability. These cases are intricate. Going up against an insurance company often means they have an army of well paid attorneys ready to help make sure your claim is denied at every level. Having an attorney whose interests are aligned with yours is how our justice system works at it’s best.

Long Term Disability Benefits: How Much is an Attorney?

An attorney who focusses his or her practice on helping plaintiffs get their long term disability benefits usually only charges you once the case wins or settles because they will look at your case very closely before they take it, and feel you have a good chance of winning with their help.