The Appeal Process
If you've been denied for a long-term disability insurance claim, it can be a very stressful time in your life. Not only are you dealing with the injuries which led you to file this claim, and the repercussions of those injuries in your daily activities, but now you have to deal with appealing the denial of the claim itself. Especially considering how well-prepared the insurance company will be, this is not a time to throw up your hands and give up hope.
Depending on the policy, federal law allows at least 60 days for an appeal on a long-term disability policy. If your claim falls under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, you will have at least 180 days. However long you have to file an appeal, you want to maximize that time to ensure you collect all the information you need to have the best chance to win your appeal.
First, though, you want to make sure that you have the right attitude. Don't think that just because an insurance company denied a claim the first time that they'll automatically deny it again on appeal. A different group looks at appeals claims, so if you're well-prepared, you may have a better chance of being approved. So, be open-minded to advice, knowing that you're going up against an entity that doesn't want to see you win.
You only have a limited time to strengthen your appeal file, which will be reviewed not only by the appeals board at your insurance company, but also by a judge in the event that your appeal is denied and you choose to bring a lawsuit against the insurance company. Make sure this is a strong file then, and include medical reports, x-rays, MRI results, supportive doctor statements, and anything else which objectively supports your long-term disability claim.
Collecting all this information can certainly be overwhelming when adjusting to all the other changes you have to deal with, so working with an experienced lawyer is a wise idea. A lawyer will help you understand your denial letter from your insurance company to determine the best course of action, and will also help you find the best sources to assemble the best information in your appeal file. They will also aid you with any negative information the insurance company may be able to collect to try and deny your appeal.
Receiving a long-term disability denial is certainly an experience no one wants to have. With the right help and the right information, however, you give yourself a good chance at being victorious in your appeal. At Dabdoub Law Firm, we offer disability insurance lawyers with extensive experience in long-term disability appeals, as well as ERISA law.
Don't face the insurance company alone and contact the Dabdoub Law Firm today.