Long Term Disability Insurance Claim Attorneys Serving Massachusetts Residents
Long term disability insurance is a type of insurance that replaces part of your income in the event you cannot work due to injury or illness. Many people in Massachusetts have long term disability insurance through their employer or through independently purchased plans.
Although long term disability insurance is designed to protect people who’ve suffered a disabling injury or illness, the claims process is very complex. The reality is that your insurance company will not make it easy to claim benefits that you are entitled to. The caring legal team at Abell and Capitan Law can help.
Our attorneys have helped disabled adults throughout Massachusetts successfully claim benefits in the wake of an accident or serious illness. When you choose our law firm to handle your claim, you can expect:
- Absolutely no upfront fees or costs.
- Superior legal services customized to your needs.
- A legal team dedicated to securing the financial support you deserve.
Let our attorneys get started on your claim, so you can restore your peace of mind. We can also appeal and fight any denied claims on your behalf. To learn more, contact us at (267) 419-7888 and schedule a free consultation with our long term disability insurance attorneys.
Massachusetts Disability Statistics
Did you know that nearly 23% of all adults in Massachusetts have some type of disability? While this is slightly lower than the national average of 25.6%, it’s still a significant number.
A closer review of Massachusetts’ disability statistics shows:
- 44.7% of disabled adults in Massachusetts are more likely to be inactive, compared to the national average of 42.2% for disabled adults.
- 10.3% of disabled people in Massachusetts have trouble making decisions and concentrating, and suffer from other cognitive impairments.
- Among disabled adults in the state, 10.8% have a condition or injury that severely inhibits their mobility.
- The yearly healthcare costs for disability amount to well over $11 billion in Massachusetts.
- It’s estimated that 6.5% of disabled adults in Massachusetts have difficulty with activities of independent living, such as shopping, running errands, and visiting the doctor.
Do I Need an Attorney for My Long Term Disability Insurance Claim?
In the wake of a disabling injury, there is a lot of uncertainty regarding when your long term disability payments will start kicking in. And to make matters worse, the process for filing a claim and proving a disability is not always easy.
It’s common for insurance companies to stall the process by requesting more documentation, or to offer much lower benefits than what you were expecting. Not only that, but policyholders usually must wait a minimum of 30 days during the “qualifying period” before receiving payment.
At Abell and Capitan Law, we understand how daunting this process is, especially when dealing with the reality of not being able to work. This is why we have devoted our practice to focusing exclusively on long term disability insurance cases. Our attorneys can help you:
- Understand the fine print so you know exactly how much you’re entitled to, and how long you can receive long term disability benefits.
- Prepare and file your claim for long term disability.
- Protect your rights against big insurance companies who have teams of lawyers.
- Obtain medical documentation to make the most of your claim and prove your extent of injury or illness.
- Fight any denied claims on your behalf.
- Litigate your case against the insurance company if benefits cannot be secured through the administrative claims process.
FAQs About Long Term Disability Insurance Benefits In Massachusetts
We’ve provided answers to some of the most common questions we receive about long term disability insurance. If you have any questions about your own options and circumstances, we urge you to contact us as soon as possible to set up a free consultation. We’re here to help.
What is the elimination period?
When it comes to long term disability insurance in Massachusetts, many policies have what’s called an elimination period. This is basically a waiting period starting from the day of your disabling injury or illness until the day you start receiving long term disability payments. The elimination period varies by policy, but many policies have periods of 30, 60, 180, or even 365 days. Typically, policies with longer elimination periods have lower monthly premiums.
What is the benefit period?
The benefit period is the length of time that you’re eligible for long term disability benefits. Benefit periods range from less than one year up to 2, 5, or 10 years. Some long-term disability plans may even pay benefits until retirement age if your injuries are severe and you cannot return to work. Generally, long term disability plans with longer benefit periods will have higher premiums.
What is the difference between “Own Occupation” and “Any Occupation” provisions?
These provisions define what the insurance company considers a disability in relation to your occupation. With “Own Occupation” policies, you are considered to be disabled if your injuries or illness prevent you from carrying out the duties of your own occupation.
On the other hand, with “Any Occupation” policies, you are considered to be totally disabled if you cannot perform the job duties of any occupation – not just your own occupation. As a result, your benefits may be reduced or denied if your injuries limit your ability to perform your primary occupation only.
What are possible reasons for denying a long term disability claim?
Each insurance company has its own set of requirements that you must meet in order to be eligible for benefits. Possible reasons for denial include:
- Not Enough Medical Evidence: When filing a claim for benefits, it’s your responsibility to provide objective medical proof of your injury or illness. Failure to meet these requirements may result in a denial of your claim. While you can appeal and provide the necessary medical documentation later, this will delay the process. This is why it’s best to hire an attorney at the outset, so you can recover benefits as soon as possible.
- Pre-Existing Condition: Some long term disability insurance plans do not pay for pre-existing conditions (mental and physical) that have worsened. This may include depression, anxiety, cancer, heart disease, asthma, arthritis, and more.
- Excluded Conditions: Your plan may also have additional exclusions, such as substance abuse-related conditions, suicide attempts, pregnancy, and certain mental conditions that only have subjective symptoms.
- Missed Deadline: Like any claims process, there are rigid deadlines you must follow when filing a long term disability claim. To prevent making errors that could cost you your claim, it’s best to hire an attorney who has experience with long term disability insurance.
What happens if my claim for long term disability is denied?
If your claim is denied, you still may be able to secure benefits, but you will have to file an appeal. When you receive the denial letter from the insurance company, review it carefully and take note of any deadlines and instructions for filing an appeal. When appealing a denied long term disability claim, you must address the reasons for the denial and further support your case with stronger medical evidence.
At this point, it’s best to hire an attorney who can fight on your behalf and ensure all documents are filed in a timely manner. A long term disability insurance attorney can also help you obtain additional medical evidence from your treating physicians or from medical experts.
If the appeal is still denied, then your attorney can file a lawsuit and take aggressive legal action to secure the benefits you’re entitled to.
Can I have other forms of income while receiving long term disability benefits?
This depends on your policy. The insurance company may reduce your amount of benefits to offset any other income you have. Or, the insurance company may discontinue your benefits entirely.
Generally speaking, if you have an “Own Occupation” policy, you may be able to earn an income elsewhere, as long as you are not working in your own occupation. But if you have an “Any Occupation” policy, then you probably cannot work at any job while receiving long term disability benefits.
Talk to An Attorney About Your Massachusetts Long Term Disability Insurance Claim
At Abell and Capitan Law, we understand that you may be facing months or even years without being able to work. This is why we focus on results-driven strategies to secure long term disability benefits as soon as possible. We also charge absolutely no upfront costs or fees, so you don’t have to worry about added expenses while you’re unable to work.
To schedule a free consultation, contact us today at (267) 419-7888. Our attorneys are ready to review your claim, whether you need help with your initial application, an appeal, or litigation.