Cigna Denies Claim Despite Evidence of Debilitating Daily Migraines
After experiencing her first migraine, a Stuart, Florida woman began having daily headaches and frequent migraine attacks. Due to the pain and debilitating symptoms, she was no longer able to work and filed for short-term disability (STD) benefits. Cigna awarded disability benefits and paid them for approximately 2 years before terminating the woman’s claim without the appropriate evidence.
At this point, our client turned to Dabdoub Law Firm for assistance.
49 Migraine Attacks in 4 Months
In September 2019, our client went to the emergency room and learned she was suffering from a migraine. While she underwent testing, treatment, and medication, her headaches continued to worsen. Eventually, she could no longer work. In May of 2020, she was forced to stop working and discovered 2 aneurysms. Suffering from debilitating symptoms, our client kept a migraine diary from June to September of 2020. During this period, she had 49 migraine attacks with an average duration of 46 hours.
The symptoms of these attacks include:
- Sensitivity to light
- Sensitivity to noise
- Ringing in the ears
- Head pressure
- Crushing pain
- Balance issues
- Visual disturbances
Our client was diagnosed with migraine with aura, intractable, with status migrainosus. Her treating neurologist concluded that our client “has almost daily headaches with frequent migraines lasting 3-4 days,” and that her “debilitating pain and associated symptoms” may limit her during a migraine attack and prevent her from reliably and consistently performing a job on a full-time basis.
Where Cigna Went Wrong
Although migraines are inherently subjective, Cigna had all the evidence it needed to approve our client’s claim. Unfortunately, the insurance company twisted that evidence in an attempt to justify an unreasonable denial of benefits. Our client had a clinical history of migraines, documented her symptoms, and received regular and appropriate care – all of which establish disability due to migraine headaches. While her exams and diagnostic testing were normal, this is typical for patients who suffer from migraines.
Before denying benefits, Cigna reviewed our client’s medical records and cherry-picked the information that would “justify” a denial, ignoring the fact that our client continues to get almost daily headaches with migraines lasting 3-4 days. Our client experienced temporary relief with a Botox injection, but the reduction of severity was short-lived, and this momentary relief does not make STD denial appropriate.
Dabdoub Law Firm Emphasizes the Evidence
Cigna used the same medical records to approve our client’s initial STD claim and deny benefits. Dabdoub Law Firm simply pointed out the fallacy of this argument and showed that the medical evidence our client provided supports the frequency and intensity of her chronic migraines.
We also emphasized that our client is no longer able to work as a result of her migraine headaches and asked Cigna to reinstate her STD benefits and provide long-term disability benefits.
Fortunately, Cigna cooperated and we did not have to pursue legal action.
Help from a Lawyer with Expertise in Disability Insurance
Disability insurance law is complex, which is why you should hire an experienced disability attorney Because all our disability lawyers at Dabdoub Law Firm focus on disability insurance claims, we have expertise in disability insurance law.
That means we have:
- Experience with every major disability insurance company.
- A proven track record of success in major disability lawsuits.
- Recovered millions of dollars in disability benefits for our clients.
Further, we never charge legal fees unless our clients get paid.
Our firm can help at any stage of your disability insurance claim, including:
- Submitting a disability insurance claim,
- Appealing a long-term disability denial,
- Negotiating a lump-sum settlement, and
- Filing a lawsuit against your disability insurance company.
Call us at (800) 969-0488 or contact us online to speak with an experienced disability attorney. Consultations are free.