Have you been injured or become ill and have found yourself unable to work for a significant period? Has your insurance company wrongly denied your claim? Were you receiving long term disability benefits that were suddenly terminated by your insurance provider? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, you should contact a Newtown Square long-term disability insurance lawyer today at (267) 419-7888 for a free consultation.
A disabling condition can be devastating. At Abell and Capitan Law, we understand how important these benefits are to you and your loved ones and we are committed to helping our Newtown Square clients get the full and fair amount that they are entitled to.
If you have long-term disability insurance, you either pay monthly premiums or have the insurance cost deducted from your paycheck to ensure that you have protection in the event that you need it. Unfortunately, even though insurance companies make billions of dollars off of premiums, they look for any reason to deny, reduce, or terminate benefits.
Abell and Capitan Law lawyers have extensive experience helping people just like you get the benefits they’ve paid for under their policies. Contact our trusted disability insurance lawyers today to secure the benefits you need and deserve. Contact us at (267) 419-7888.
Why Do I Need a Lawyer?
Disability insurance law is highly complicated. Claim applications must adhere to confusing and complex instructions and deadlines. Making minor mistakes, forgetting to send a document, or being a day late can result in a denied application. Even if you submit a perfect claim, insurance companies may deny your claim.
If your long term disability benefits claim is denied, you have a right to appeal. If your appeal is denied, filing a lawsuit against the insurance company may be the best next step. An experienced disability insurance lawyer will help you through every step of this process.
Sometimes, insurance companies offer policyholders a lump-sum settlement. It’s critical that you consult with a lawyer before accepting any payment from an insurance company. Insurance companies may try to take advantage of disabled policyholders, who are facing massive medical bills and are unfamiliar with disability insurance law, by offering low-ball settlements.
When you take settlement money, you will be required to sign an agreement that releases the insurance company from any further payment. That means that you will no longer be entitled to benefits even if your disability requires further medical care. For some, taking a settlement might be the right choice. Still, a lawyer might be able to negotiate the settlement higher or advise when you should keep fighting for your claim.
Why Should I Choose Abell and Capitan Law?
Our Abell and Capitan Law office in Newtown Square was founded with the sole mission of handling disability insurance law. Usually, law firms that take on disability insurance cases are primarily focused on other practice areas, such as Social Security, personal injury, and workers’ compensation. By focusing exclusively on the narrow field of disability insurance law, the attorneys at Abell and Capitan Law are highly equipped to stand up against insurance companies and maximize our clients’ chances of compensation.
Although insurance companies tend to have similar claims handling processes, there are important nuances between companies and policies in the disability insurance world. At Abell and Capitan Law, we treat each case individually rather than using a one-size-fits-all approach. Your best legal path will depend on your disability, insurance provider, and particular policy. We look carefully at the details to get a full picture of your case and then work out your legal options, rather than only relying on strategies that have worked in the past.
In order to ensure that our legal representation is accessible to all, regardless of financial situation, we work on a contingency-fee-basis. This means that you’ll pay us nothing up front, and we’ll only collect our fee when we get you the benefits you deserve.
What Is Long Term Disability Insurance?
Disability insurance benefits primarily exist to replace an employee’s wages in the event that they can no longer work. These benefits are usually 50-80% of the pre-disability average wage. Most people get long term disability insurance through their employer, although some may choose to buy individual plans if they are self-employed or if their employer’s policy coverage is insufficient.
If you get your long term disability insurance through your employer, then it is governed by a federal law called the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). This law was designed to protect employees, but in reality, it often makes it more difficult for employees to access their disability benefits.
Over the years, various courts have interpreted aspects of ERISA in ways that prioritize the interests of insurance companies and leave policyholders behind. ERISA created complex deadlines that claimants must meet when making a disability insurance claim, which has made it more difficult for many policyholders to qualify for benefits. Hiring an experienced long term disability insurance lawyer who can work with you on this process from start to finish will maximize your chances of receiving benefits.
“Own-Occupation” Versus “Any-Occupation” Disability Insurance
Most long term disability insurance policies divide disabilities into two categories that identify the extent to which your disability impacts your ability to work. These two categories are “own-occupation” and “any-occupation,” and refer to whether your disability affects your ability to do your own job or if it prevents you from doing any job. Your policy may only provide coverage for one of these two categories. Consider this example:
- You are a construction worker, and your disability prevents you from lifting anything above 20 pounds, thus making you unable to do your job. However, if you could find other work for which you are reasonably qualified that is less strenuous, such as working as a cashier, you can still make a living. You are not considered incapable of doing any job. If you have “own-occupation” disability insurance, then you are entitled to benefits since you cannot do your own job.
If you can prove that your disability prevents you from doing any job for which you are reasonably qualified, then you can be covered by an “any-occupation” policy. It’s more difficult to prove that you are incapable of doing any job. You may have to establish that you are not reasonably qualified for the jobs for which you are physically capable of doing.
For example, if all of the jobs you are physically able to do require advanced education, and you do not have this education, then you are not qualified for these jobs. Insurance companies may try to deny you benefits based on the argument that you are physically capable of doing jobs for which, in reality, you are unqualified.
Oftentimes, policies that cover “any-occupation” disabilities are less expensive than “own-occupation” disabilities, because “any-occupation” disabilities are much less common (for example, an injury that makes it impossible to lift heavy items is much more common than quadriplegia).
Many long-term disability insurance policies switch from “own-occupation” coverage to “any-occupation” coverage after a period of time, such as two years. This is one reason why individuals may have their coverage terminated, and why it’s critical to hire a disability insurance lawyer from the very beginning. We can make sure you have a clear picture of your benefits and form a legal strategy that takes your long term situation into account.
Contact a Newtown Square Long Term Disability Insurance Lawyer
If your long term disability insurance benefits have been denied, reduced, or terminated, you should hire an experienced lawyer as soon as possible. Federal laws governing disability insurance mandate that you follow complicated timelines and procedures when filing disability insurance claims. Without expert legal help, you risk making errors that prevent you from accessing your benefits.
At Abell and Capitan Law, we are passionate about helping people like you get the benefits they’re owed. We offer a 100% free consultation, so call our Newtown Square lawers today at (267) 419-7888 to discuss your situation with a knowledgeable member of our team.